UK shoppers are expected to spend an average of £1,963 in the run up to Christmas this year, up 12.5% on 2016.
According to the latest Adobe Digital Insights report, which surveyed over 1,000 UK consumers, as well as over 4,000 from across the globe, UK shoppers are planning to spend more money online this than ever before this Christmas.
In total, Britons anticipate carrying out more than half (53%) of their entire Christmas spend online, and one fifth (21%) expect to increase online shopping spend this year. Store closures on the high street and the stress of the in-store experience were cited as key factors for increasing online shopping.
In terms of spend, the report reveals that consumers expect to spend 52% of their budget with online only retailers such as Amazon and ASOS, 30% with major national retailers with both an online and bricks and mortar presence, and 18% with local, independent stores.
The average spend includes festive groceries, celebration decorations, and presents for loved ones, and while British respondents revealed they intend to spend more money online this year compared to the same period last year, they are also planning to be more thoughtful about what they buy.
Practical gifts – which are expected to take up three-fifths (61%) of UK present spend – are being prioritised over fun and frivolous items (39%). Additionally, lower prices and good deals are the top priority for 42% of shoppers – something many retailers are responding to by offering more frequent discounting, leading 53% of consumer to say that Black Friday and Cyber Monday are less important now.
David Burnand, marketing director at Adobe, commented: “More than any other time of year, Christmas is when experiences matter most – for both consumers and retailers. But the retail experience has to stack up to what consumers expect – it needs to surprise, delight, introduce them to the perfect gifts, and be consistent across all channels and devices. If retailers can tap into the fun and joy of the season, and create a shopping experience that’s easy and stress-free, they can secure a slice of holiday spending and drive loyalty all year round.”
When asked about the ideal Christmas shopping experience, almost half (47%) of UK consumers state that it would be entirely online. However, even those shoppers who enjoy the physical shopping experience still use their smartphones as an important shopping companion – three-quarters (74%) have compared product prices with rival brands on their mobile phones, while a third (31%) have bought an item on their smartphone while queuing in a retail store.
In fact, when it comes to online shopping, the vast majority (85%) said they would rely on their smartphone the same or more this year for their Christmas shopping.