Half (50%) of UK shoppers have already started their Christmas shopping, with 45% buying earlier than usual to avoid inflationary price increases, a new study suggests.
Sensormatic Solutions asked over 1,000 UK adults for their UK Retail: Buyer Sentiment Report 2022 and found that in addition to the 50% who have already started shopping, another 29% plan to do so in November, and 31% had already started shopping in September. By early December, 79% say they will likely have started their Christmas shopping.
Price will be the most important issue when shopping for 74% of shoppers, up nine percentage points (pp) from last year, and 67% (+23pp) plan to spend less than last year. Some 73% say they will spend more time hunting for deals this year, and almost a quarter (23%) say they are shopping earlier to avoid supply chain disruption. With Royal Mail strikes hitting Black Friday and Cyber Monday, 17% said they had started shopping early to avoid shipping delays. And 42% said they would be more likely to shop in-store to be sure of product availability.
andy Sumter, Sensormatic SolutionsThe EMEA retail consultant says: “Prices and product availability are becoming key factors affecting consumer behavior during this year’s Christmas trade. As such, many retailers are already responding by freezing prices to support customers, although at the same time they are also feeling keenly the growing cost bases in their supply chains, purchasing and labor costs.”
Sumpter says retailers should consider that in-store spikes may not follow traditional patterns. “This means adjusting staffing levels to ensure customer service and in-store CX can be maintained and, with product availability also high on shoppers’ agendas, considering additional fulfillment options such as click and collect, to meet these demands and boost the environment. footprint in the store.
The appetite to buy second-hand is growing
More UK adults would now consider giving Christmas gifts in light of the rising cost of living, a Shopiago study suggests. It has tracked attitudes among 2,000 UK adults and found that 37% would be happy to give or receive a second-hand gift, up from 29% in February. He also found a significant shift toward buying second-hand children’s gifts.
Thom Bryan, Product Manager Shopiago, says: “The British have always been a nation of charity shoppers, but historically many people would refrain from buying a beloved gift for a friend or relative at Christmas. It is revealing to see that this number has grown so drastically in the last seven months.
“Charity shopping can be a great way to find some bargains, save money, support a good cause and do your part for the planet; so it’s good to see more people recognizing these benefits, though it’s sad that it’s in the context of skyrocketing costs. A lot of people still don’t know that almost all major charities are now selling online, making it even easier for those looking for gifts this Christmas.”
Shopiago, part of the World of Books Group, works with organizations like the British Red Cross and Sue Ryder to sell donations from online stores.