Insight: study finds that only 1% of shoppers plan to start Christmas shopping on Black Friday
The study by IMRG, the UK online retail association, and digital insights company Toluna, discovered that many respondents seemed keen to spread the cost of Christmas shopping, with 31% indicating that they even started shopping before November.
Some 59% of shoppers said they “usually or sometimes” wait for discounts before buying products. When questioned on why they would pay full price for a product, quality was the top answer for 40% of those polled.
When it came to more expensive items, shoppers were found to have less of an appetite for paying full price this year. In 2016, 39% of people reported having paid full price for a product which cost more than £100 in the past year but this dropped to 13% this year.
Andy Mulcahy, strategy and insight director of IMRG, said: “Black Friday is probably the most important date in the retail calendar when volumes reach an annual high but, as this survey suggests, the Christmas shopping period still extends over a very long period. This is because different people approach shopping in different ways; retailers report that searches for ‘Christmas’ start to rise as early as July each year, while other people might only start thinking about it the week of Christmas itself. The opportunity is to identify these different segments and develop targeting strategies for each over that period as appropriate.
“Interestingly, for an event that has proven so divisive in the past, sentiment toward Black Friday hardly changed this year - with 33% saying they love or like it, up from 31.5% in 2016, and 25% saying they hate or dislike it, up from 24.5%. The remainder, 42%, had no strong feelings either way, up from 44% in 2016.”
The study also found that 66% of shoppers said that whether a retailer participates in sales such as Black Friday does not impact on how they see the brand. Furthermore, some 26% said they would actually respect the brand for not taking part.
Looking at where consumers thought the best deals could be found, the poll found that 13% thought the High Street was the best place compared to 9% last year. The number who thought there was no difference between online and the High Street increased from 34% in 2016 to 37% in 2017. While 56% thought online had the edge in 2016, this dropped to 50% this year.
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