Beginning to look a lot like eXmas, everywhere you go…

online_shopping2As retailers put the finishing touches to their instore Black Friday deals, it has been revealed that almost two thirds of British consumers plan to shun physical stores completely to do all their Christmas shopping online this year.

On what will finally herald in the first eChristmas, a study by Generation Pay shows 60% of shoppers plan to rely on ecommerce platforms for the whole of the festive season, with more than a quarter (26% ) of those prefer to do their seasonal shop via social media, confirming the rise of social commerce.

The study also reveals Gen Z shoppers are most attracted to the convenience of online shopping, with more than two thirds (68%) preferring to shop digitally, while 70% of Millennials (and 46% of Baby Boomers) also cited a range of payment methods as a key preference when shopping.

On what will be a potential Christmas bonus for the likes of Klarna and ClearPay – if not for debt charities – more than a quarter (28%) stated that they plan to use Buy-Now Pay-Later (BNPL) schemes to make their online festive purchases this year, rising to 43% for Millennials.

The research also showed that alternative payment methods could help to reduce returns.

Almost one in four (24%) purchases are returned during the Christmas shopping season – but this drops to almost 15% for items bought through BNPL.

FIS head of merchant retail growth Maria Prados said: “The pandemic is having a lasting impact on UK consumer shopping preferences. To capitalise on the festive period, retailers must respond to customers’ changing demands by ensuring they are adopting the necessary technology which will give consumers more choice at the checkout.”

Earlier this week, UK retailers pinning their hopes on a bumper Black Friday instore were urged to rethink their plans and draw up bespoke data insight-driven online deals to lure customers in and provide a seamless digital shopping experience.

The rise of Black Friday fatigue was highlighted by an Adobe Analytics study into UK consumers’ shopping habits, which analysed billions of online transactions that have passed through UK retail sites.

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