With Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Manic Monday all reaching new sales heights this year, you would be forgiven for assuming customers might be less than enthusiastic about another Boxing Day sale. However, if predications are anything to go by, this Boxing Day is set to be the biggest yet, with retailers expecting to profit £2.9bn, £75m more than in 2013.
RetailMeNot, the world’s first choice, ‘to save some money’ commissioned the market research that was conducted by the Centre for Retail Research. By studying 50 major retailers and over 1,000 UK consumers, RetailMeNot found that the British public will be out in full form this Christmas, as Giulio Montemagno, Senior Vice President of international RetailMeNot, quoted that the sales are set to, “rise to nearly £3 billion this year, which is the second highest spend in Europe”. Britain is expected to fall behind Germany which is predicted to accumulate £4bn, with France falling slightly behind with a total spend of 2.5bn.
According to research presented by RetailMeNot, the ‘selfie generation’ is set to spend most of its money on clothing and footwear, household goods and consumer electronics. Clothing and footwear are set to profit £599m, while consumer electronics will profit £538m, as customers are expected to buy more goods for themselves this year. Giulio Montemagno stated, “After having spent a lot to please their loved ones for Christmas, the post-Christmas sales are for many the occasion to give themselves a treat. The ‘Selfie Generation’ is fast becoming a gift for retailers.”
Though customers will be buying gifts to pamper themselves, they will also be preparing for New Year’s celebrations, as the biggest riser for sales this year is set to be alcohol and confectionary. This will include an increase of 18% from 2013, with an overall profit of 133m, as consumer tastes have become more sophisticated. Customers now prefer quality over quantity.
Shopping is expected to move away from toys and consumer electronics as sales for these items are set to fall by 1.5% to £472m and 0.6% to £538m. However, this isn’t expected to put customers off spending over Christmas, as Amazon will be beginning its sale December 24th in a hope to draw in cash careful consumers earlier.
Online sales are expected to have an impact on Boxing Day with Christmas and Boxing Day sales set to reach £1.3bn, £636m on Christmas Day and £748m on Boxing Day. Dan Wagner, founder and CEO of Powa Technologies said, “This has already been a truly watershed year for mobile commerce, and the vast amount of sales expected to take place online over Christmas and Boxing Day will truly cement 2014 as a turning point in retail”.
Wagner also highlights how many consumers now see hunting for goods online as a hobby, allowing customers to, “avoid crowds and long lines at the tills”, as he describes how queuing at traditional checkout systems can be ‘tedious’. With more pressure on creating the perfect shopping experience, retailers will have to put more focus on in store sales to draw customers away from the comfort of their couches. Wagner went on to add, “Retailers must explore ways to combine their bricks-and-mortar” in order to provide an easy, flexible shopping experience in store.
Retailers are expecting to bring in 2.7% more profit than in 2013, when revenue reached £2.7 bn. Expectations are high and retailers will have to be prepared for the mass demand that has spread across the festive period this year.
Rather than being focused on Boxing Day sales, this year has seen an overall success for festive sales, whether they fall before Christmas, with Black Friday reaching £810m or whether it is the post Christmas sales starting earlier. Regardless of which event profits the most, this Christmas has seen an increasing confidence in retailers providing gifts before Christmas and increasing demand for stores to make sales shopping as enjoyable as possible. With Amazon, Topshop, River Island, Argos, John Lewis and Harrods all looking to profit on the 26th, retailers are eager to make the most of the full festive period