Christmas: How much have you spent so far?

How much do you think you’ve spent so far?

With Christmas just days away, you might expect that most of us have got our Christmas present shopping under way, and have moved on to wrapping and preparing the home or travel plans for the day itself. BUT! Do you have any idea how much money you’re going to spend on Christmas this year?

What is the average budget for Christmas?

According to our recent research report, the average amount planned to be spent on Christmas 2014 is £433 per person. This includes presents, decorations and food.

What's your budget for Christmas? Compare yourself to the rest of the UK with Webloyalty

Click for a larger image (Full report at Webloyalty UK)

How long to wait before buying the turkey?

When it comes to buying food for Christmas day, analysts have confirmed that the best time to head for the shops is between 6:30 and 7:30am tomorrow (Tuesday 23rd December). The Telegraph reports: shoppers who rise early each year on December 23 obtain the “fullest, freshest and quickest shop”, according to analysis of supermarket delivery times, staffing and footfall.

It’s got to have some truth in it, as looking around Sainsbury’s yesterday most of their ‘Christmas’ branded items had Best Before dates that fell before Christmas Eve!

It turns out that as a nation we are choosing Tesco as our number one destination for food shopping, with Sainsbury’s a second option.

Tesco wins the title of chosen Christmas supermarket of 2014, according to Webloyalty

Click for a larger image (Webloyalty UK)

The Christmas sales: are you going online?

Despite the news articles today talking about the Christmas Day peak in online sales, our research report revealed that only 4% of UK consumers are heading online to snap up sales on the day itself. In fact, only half of the country will be looking at sales at all. The majority of sale seekers will be starting their shopping no earlier than Saturday 27th, and finishing up before the new year. If you’re interested in reading more, you can see the full report here.

The UK’s Christmas plans: 2014

Here you can easily get all the key findings from our report, told to you through the power of festive animated storytelling! Enjoy.

Are you looking forward to Christmas? Join the conversation:

@WebloyaltyUK

How to build your brand - from Guy Chiswick at Webloyalty3

How to Build Your Brand for Today’s Consumer

Today’s fickle shopper means that having a strong brand is more important than ever. Guy Chiswick, Managing Director of Webloyalty Northern Europe, discusses five areas which retailers should focus on when trying to create a strong brand identity to attract the modern customer.

Building Blocks of Branding Success - Webloyalty UK

Image Courtesy of Deepak & Sunitha, Creative Commons http://goo.gl/xfT7VJ

How to build your brand

In today’s hyper-competitive market, bricks and mortar shops on the high street are not only competing with each other, but also with the allure of online stores. With so much choice, fickle customers can no longer be lured in by attractive products, and a ‘something for everyone’ store portfolio. To stay ahead of the curve, build your brand by developing a strong and, ideally, unique brand identity, which expresses their retail proposition to potential clients.

Key points for how to build your brand:

  1. How people are shopping today
  2. The importance of sub-branding
  3. Visually stimulating customer experience
  4. How to improve shop aesthetic
  5. Brand consistency is essential
  6. Adapt your store portfolio

How are we shopping now?

Following the recession, and owing to the proliferation of digital shopping channels, the way in which consumers shop has changed. They now expect more from their retail experience, and are more discerning about where they buy. According a survey of over 2,000 consumers that Webloyalty undertook, the most popular retailers were John Lewis (21.4%), Primark (18.3%), Debenhams (13.8%), H&M (9.8%) and Waitrose (9.7%). Whilst these brands share little in common in terms of their portfolio, prices and offering, each of them has a distinct brand identity and is known for offering their customers something desirable and unique – whether it’s value for money, a popular product range or a special experience in store.

The importance of sub-branding

In my experience, many outfits tend to fall short when they try to go after the whole market, or attempt to offer a ‘one-size-fits-all’ store portfolio. Making homogenous ranges that ‘could’ cater to the needs of every customer can often be confusing and off-putting to shoppers. In order to avoid these pitfalls, businesses should aim to offer their customers a clearly segmented and visually inspiring offer, where product ranges are given their own distinct identity. This is where sub-branding is critical, as it allows your customers to understand how your ranges are tailored to their specific needs, providing them with an easy and logical shopping experience.

How to Build Your Brand - an article from Guy Chiswick, MD at Webloyalty Northern Europe

Image courtesy of GirlTalkHQ http://goo.gl/CScIxr

Visually stimulating customers’ interest

The importance of visual merchandising is often underplayed, but it has become a crucial part of stimulating customers’ interest. Online shopping is usually efficient and this efficiency has bred impatience in shoppers when using physical stores. Many will not take the time to browse or search for what they want. Making sure that each section of your store is not only visually stimulating but also signposts what is offered will help your customers find what they want and make choices accordingly.

Shop aesthetic

Unfortunately, stores can no longer depend on passing footfall to generate business. Online shopping offers convenience and efficiency, so bricks and mortar shops often need to offer something special to lure customers to visit. Creating a unique shop aesthetic and an exciting in-store experience can be the key to this. Presenting your customers with themes and stories, rather than just offering the products on their own merit, can help them make their choices. Two stores which excel at this are Apple and Hollister, who place as much importance on their stores’ designs as they do on their products. Not only do their stores offer a unique and exciting aesthetic, the aesthetic neatly matches their product offering, making it clear to customers exactly what they can expect from the store.

How to Build your Brand - consistency is everything - Webloyalty UK

Image courtesy of Derek Gavey, Creative Commons: http://goo.gl/e29THF

Brand consistency

One of the most important factors to consider when building your brand is consistency. Creating compelling product lines and an exciting store aesthetic will not be as effective if consistency cannot be maintained. The most successful brands are consistent across all aspects of the retail proposition, from product ranges to marketing to the store environment. Developing a coherent brand image is essential to expressing your entire store proposition to potential customers, building up customer loyalty and making sure you stay at the forefront of their minds when they shop.

Adapting store portfolio

Finally, as shopper habits become increasingly diverse, store portfolios need to evolve to better meet shoppers’ expectations. Retailers need to have a strategy for segmenting their supply according to consumer demand and the local competitive environment; a particularly salient example of this can be seen in John Lewis, which has opened larger flagship stores in major catchment areas, while in-filling gaps with smaller, flexible format outlets. Despite a difficult retail environment over recent years, John Lewis is a retailer which has continued to grow from strength to strength, reporting its best annual like-for-like sales growth since the start of the recession in February 2014. This popularity means John Lewis stores, and its huge flagship outlets in particular, are able to drive significantly high footfall.

I hope this has helped you with ideas about how to build your brand. Don’t hesitate to connect on Twitter, and if you have any other ideas about how to build your brand, please leave a comment below.

~ Guy Chiswick, Webloyalty

We thank Holger on Creative Commons for the header image.

Looking Ahead: Christmas Spending and Trends in the UK

We are delighted to publish the Webloyalty Christmas spending report in full, and you can view it on Slideshare here:

Key findings: the Christmas Spending report

A sparkly Christmas

While Christmas won’t be as lucrative as it was during the heady days before the economic downturn, we expect spending to sparkle this festive season with total growth of 2.7%. However, the spoils will not be evenly distributed with food and grocery struggling on a 1.5% increase. Spending on gifts will see an uplift of 3.3%.

We’re dreaming of … a traditional Christmas

Spending to one side, most of us will celebrate Christmas Day in a fairly traditional way with 64% having a festive meal with family, 61% watching the television, and 60% opening presents. Only 14% plan to listen to the Queen’s speech and 12% will use the day as an excuse for a lie-in. A small 1.6% will catch up on housework.

Getting out the games

12% of us will be playing board games on Christmas Day. Our favourites include: card games (played by 9%), Trivial Pursuit (7%), Monopoly (7%), Scrabble (6%), and Charades (4%).
Webloyalty reports against Christmas Spending and Trends in the UK - 2014 research

Season’s greetings

While many things have gone digital, 66% of us plan to send only printed Christmas cards, compared to just 3% who say they will only send e-cards. The average consumer is planning to send 27 cards this Christmas.

Time commitment

The average consumer will spend around 10 hours on Christmas-related shopping activities, with a committed 4.5% spending more than 48 hours on shopping. The total budget will be an average of £433 with 6.6% budgeting £1,000 or more.

The festive table

Almost half of us plan to spend £9.99 or less per head on the Christmas meal and most of us (67%) will do our shopping in physical stores. 81% will eat roast potatoes for Christmas dinner, 65% roast turkey and 65% stuffing. 5% will have steak.
We have highlighted the key findings from the research in this fun animation below. You can also see it on Webloyalty’s YouTube.

Amazon Local Services and ECommerce for Twitter…

ECommerce Bytes from Webloyalty

This week we’re looking at the new Amazon Local Services, and the launch of ECommerce through Twitter Offers.

Ecommerce Bytes from Webloyalty discusses Amazon Fresh

 

We hope you enjoy today’s ECommerce Bytes from Webloyalty.

Introducing Amazon Local Services

Amazon Local Services is launched in Beta - Webloyalty's ECommerce Bytes

Image courtesy of Forbes: http://goo.gl/y1g4aD

Amazon is testing the local services waters by connecting customers with professionals who can assemble, set up, install and repair home appliances. Initially limited to three metropolitan areas, Amazon plans to expand both the geography and the variety of its local services in the future. This could be a boon for small to medium businesses – or they could find themselves firmly under Amazon’s thumb. You can read more on ECommerce Times.

Twitter Offers brings ecommerce to social

Twitter Offers brings ecommerce to social

Image courtesy of Media Bistro: http://goo.gl/wfwO6X

Twitter has rolled out Twitter Offers, a few months after introducing the ‘buy’ button. How well this will go down with Twitter users, we won’t know yet – but we do know that people don’t react very well to sponsored tweets.

Twitter’s statement:

“With Twitter Offers, advertisers will be able to attribute redemptions directly to their campaigns on Twitter, so that they can effectively measure the ROI from their promotions, even when redemption happens offline. Additionally, we make it easy for merchants to get up and running because they can use their existing payment network, there’s no change to the consumer purchase process, no employee training and no new hardware or software to install. By leveraging Twitter’s robust targeting capabilities, advertisers can tailor their promotions and campaigns to the right audience, while optimizing for performance.” 

You can read on Entrepreneur.com or the Twitter blog itself.

Join the ecommerce discussion @WebloyaltyUK

UK Christmas Plans for 2014: An Infographic

From research published this week by Webloyalty UK, this infographic reveals the Christmas plans for UK consumers.

Infographic showing Christmas Plans for 2014 UK consumers, from Webloyalty research

The Webloyalty Christmas Retail Report will be available shortly, but in the meantime here are some highlights of key findings. We hope you enjoy the infographic, and feel free to share it, mentioning @WebloyaltyUK.

We have been lucky enough to have a lot of media interest in our findings so far, and you can find articles on Economic Voice, Talking Retail and International Business Times, to name a few.

Below is the text version of the Webloyalty Christmas infographic, feel free to lift stats and reference them to Webloyalty UK.

What are our Christmas plans for 2014?

  • 64% plan to have a Christmas meal with family
  • 14% will watch or listen to the Queen’s speech
  • 12% will play board games
  • 8% will go to midnight mass or alternative church service

Which foods do we normally eat at Christmas?

  • A whopping 81% choose to eat roasted potatoes
  • 65% will eat roast turkey, with other options being salmon, steak
  • 44% will eat mince pies
  • A surprisingly high number, at 43% choose to eat Xmas pudding

In total, how much will we spend on gifts?

  • The majority, 56%, will spend between £100 and £399.99 on gifts
  • 20% will spend more than £400 on Christmas gifts
  • 14% will spend between £25 and £99.99
  • Just 3% will spend under £25 on Christmas gifts in total

Are we planning to send Christmas cards?

  • 66% plan to send Christmas cards in the post
  • 16% will send a mixture of cards and online cards this Christmas
  • 15% say that cards do not feature in their Christmas plans at all
  • 3% say they will only send online cards this festive season

What are your Christmas plans? Join the discussion on Twitter.

Webloyalty shares insight around the retail sector, and recent innovations and developments.