eDigitalResearch and IMRG found that 44% of smartphone owners have said that they will consider doing some of their Christmas shopping online, with over half of these (64%) planning to purchase more gifts and Christmas items from their device than they did during the festive period in 2012. The survey of 2,000 online consumers also found that almost all respondents (96%) will shop online this Christmas, with 48% purchasing at least half of their Christmas shopping on the internet.
The results highlight the need for retailers to ensure that all their touch points – no matter how many they operate – are accessible to everyone in order to maximise Christmas sales.
The survey also found that a quarter (25%) of consumers feel that their online shopping experience is ‘significantly better’ or ‘slightly better’ at Christmas time thanks to special deals and a bigger range of products on offer. Just 7% feel that it gets worse.
In comparison, almost half (42%) feel that their in-store experience deteriorates during the festive period with busy stores, queues and a limited number of staff to deal with requests some of the main reasons that people feel high street shopping at Christmas is worse than any other time of the year.
The quarterly eCSI study has been tracking people’s Christmas shopping habits since 2008 and has found that consumers are increasingly turning to the internet and their online devices for better deals and more choice as household budgets continue to be squeezed.
Derek Eccleston, Commercial Director at eDigitalResearch, says: “Back in 2010 just 35% of smartphone owners said that they would even consider doing Christmas shopping from their devices. This Christmas, retailers are likely to see more festive purchases through mobile sites and apps than ever before. As a result, retailers and brands need to ensure that they are ready for the usual Christmas shopping spree and provide a seamless shopping experience no matter what channel a consumer uses. The customer experience has to be right from the offset – from a simple, yet inviting homepage right through to fulfilling orders on time as promised and ensuring that gifts arrive in time for the big day”.
Andy Mulcahy, Editor at IMRG, adds: “It is little wonder that such a high percentage of people (64%) say they are planning to do more shopping through their phones this Christmas; we’ve seen sales through mobile devices (smartphones and tablets) grow rapidly over the past few years, accounting for 23% of online sales in Q2 of 2013 with site visits at 34%. To put in perspective the rate at which confidence in the channel has grown, three years ago at the start of 2010, sales through mobile devices stood at just 0.4% of online sales.”
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