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Thursday, April 18, 2024

A festive flop without online shopping, claim consumers

Christmas shopping composition

Research published reveals that almost a third (31%) of shoppers wouldn’t have had a successful Christmas without Amazon and over half (54%) of people say they do the majority of their Christmas shopping online as opposed to in-store.

The study of over 1,500 UK adults, carried out by market research and insight specialist Trinity McQueen, explores the changing face of festive shopping as consumers start ticking off Christmas lists over the festive period.

The findings also expose the chief frustrations amongst consumers in the lead up to Christmas, with almost half (43%) of shoppers naming busy stores as the main pain point. A quarter (25%) of those questioned say finding a cheaper product post-purchase is a key frustration and a fifth (21%) claim free delivery would improve their Christmas shopping experience.

When quizzed on our emotions and behaviour over the busy shopping period, almost one in nine (85%) of us say that we feel enthusiastic, excited and happy early to mid-December. By contrast, in late December we start to feel the strain, during which 89% of us feel frustrated, stressed or pressured to get our festive gifts bought on time. This places the onus on retailers to support shoppers to alleviate their anxiety.

However Christmas shopping is generally a positive experience for British consumers, with three quarters (76%) stating we either love or like the shopping season. Women and younger consumers, particularly those aged between 25 and 34 years, are amongst those driving the enthusiasm.

Anna Cliffe, joint-managing director of Trinity McQueen, comments: “Navigating the busy festive season requires retailers to act nimbly and adjust their focus and offers as consumers shift their opinions. Our research highlights the need for retail brands to take on a more supportive role in the last two weeks leading up to Christmas when negative emotions are most prevalent amongst consumers.

“Since busy stores and the ease of price comparison sites are pushing consumers to the online marketplace, retailers need to optimise their online offerings, highlighting their free and fast fulfilment options that need to deliver as close as possible to Christmas Day itself.”

The research also revealed an opportunity for retailers looking to reinvigorate the January sales, with over two thirds (61%) of respondents saying they find them less exciting than they used to be. Retailers could be missing a trick here, particularly when over half (53%) of consumers claim they love to spend their Christmas money and vouchers over the post-Xmas sales period.

Anna said: “The January sales period holds opportunities for retailers looking to reinvigorate and own the event. Post-Christmas sales are still well loved by consumers, but they simply aren’t thought to be a big deal these days because of other the discounting events before Christmas – Black Friday being one of them. Retailers could take advantage of the vacuum and become synonymous with January sales in the same way Amazon owns Black Friday.”

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