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    Nov 25 to be ‘third busiest shopping day’ in run up to Christmas as shoppers plan ahead

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    Nov 25, the Saturday of the Black Friday weekend, is expected to be the third busiest shopping day during peak trading this year, states a recent report released today (17), adding 55 per cent will Christmas shop earlier to spread the cost of gifts over more paydays

    According to Sensormatic Solutions, ‘Super Saturday’ (Dec 23)- the last Saturday before Christmas, is tipped to be the busiest in-store shopping day of the entire 2023 peak trading season, rising from the UK’s third busiest day for Christmas shopping in 2022.  Last year, UK shoppers were tipped to have spent almost £1.63million on Super Saturday, as they topped up on last minute gifts and headed in-store to avoid Royal Mail strike disruption impacting online deliveries in the final shopping days before Christmas.

    Rest of the other top five busiest days are Dec 16 (Saturday), Nov 25 (Saturday after Black Friday), Dec 9 (second Saturday in December) and Dec 2 (first Saturday in December).

    “Retailers around the world are likely to have another strong holiday season this year,” said Tony D’Onofrio, President at Sensormatic Solutions. “Those looking to make the most of it can use our predictions as a guide – but it’s critical that retailers also leverage internal data and analytics tools to refine their approach to promotions, staffing and customer experience in November and December.  It’s this additional insight that will put businesses two steps ahead entering the New Year.”

    While the Nov 25 is expected to be the third busiest day for in-store footfall during 2023 peak trading, Black Friday itself failed to make it into the top five busiest days. Just a quarter (27 per cent) of UK consumers plan to head in-store on Black Friday (24 November) this year and less than a fifth (18 per cent) intend to shop for deals online on Black Friday, according to Sensormatic Solutions’ latest research. 

    Despite the top five busiest footfall days all being expected to fall between Black Friday weekend and Christmas Day, cost-of-living caution is prompting UK consumers to start Christmas shopping earlier, as they seek out the best deals and try and spread the cost of Christmas over several paychecks.

    Original research of over 1,000 UK shoppers by Sensormatic in its annual UK Retail Shopper Sentiment Report showed that half (49 per cent) had already started their Christmas gift buying by October and two fifths (38 per cent) said they planned to start their Christmas shopping earlier this year.  

    With economic uncertainty and household budgets remaining squeezed, over half (55 per cent) said they were shopping earlier to allow them to spread the cost of Christmas over more paydays, rising to 61 per cent of Millennials, while 45 per cent said they planned to get ahead with gift buying to ensure they could shop around for the best deals, up +9 percentage points year-on-year.  Price remained UK consumers’ top consideration when gift buying for Christmas 2023 for 82 per cent, up +8 percentage points year-on-year, which is prompting 77 per cent to spend more time searching out deals – up +4 per cent compared to 2022 – during peak trading this year.

    “Price will undoubtedly be a watchword for peak trading 2023, and this price-sensitivity and canny consumer spending will prompt shoppers to become even more sporadic in their buying behaviours.  This makes mapping in-store traffic all the harder for retailers, however historical data can be extremely valuable when preparing 2023 peak trading strategies,” said Andy Sumpter, Sensormatic Solutions’ EMEA Retail Consultant, whose team predicts the top busiest days of the Christmas shopping season. 

    “As Christmas Day falls on a Monday this year, retailers can look to data from 2017 – the last time the holiday fell on Monday – to tailor their strategies.”

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