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‘Busy stores’ driving Christmas shoppers away

Busy stores have been named as the main frustration for 43% of UK shoppers over the festive period, according to new data.

Nearly a third of shoppers (31%) believed they would not have a “successful Christmas” without Amazon, while more than a fifth (21%) claimed free delivery would improve their festive shopping experience.

More than half (54%) of shoppers do their Christmas shopping online, according a survey of more than 1,500 adults by market research and insights agency Trinity McQueen.

A quarter of respondents said another frustration was finding a cheaper product after purchasing.

However more than three-quarters (75%) said they either loved or liked the shopping season, particularly women and customers aged 25-34 years.

Emotionally, 85% of respondents felt enthusiastic and excited about Christmas in early- to mid-December, but 89% said they were stressed and frustrated about buying gifts on time in late December.

Anna Cliffe, joint managing director at Trinity McQueen, said: “Navigating the busy festive season requires retailers to act nimbly and adjust their focus and offers as consumers shift their opinions. Our research highlights the need for retail brands to take on a more supportive role in the last two weeks leading up to Christmas when negative emotions are most prevalent amongst consumers.

“Since busy stores and the ease of price comparison sites are pushing consumers to the online marketplace, retailers need to optimise their online offerings, highlighting their free and fast fulfilment options that need to deliver as [closely] as possible to Christmas Day itself.”

The research also showed 61% of respondents said they found the January Sales “less exciting than they used to be”, despite 53% claiming that they “love” to spend their Christmas money and vouchers over the Sales period.

Cliffe said retailers could “take advantage of the vacuum” and become “synonymous with January sales in the same way Amazon owns Black Friday”.

 

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