Boxing Day sales: Shoppers predicted to spend less

1 month ago 100

Shoppers queueing outside Selfridges on Boxing DayImage source, PA Media

The post-Christmas sales may be getting into full swing, but research suggests shoppers will be spending less than they did last year.

Consumers are forecast to spend £3.7bn on Boxing Day, according to research for the VoucherCodes website, which is down 2.9% on a year earlier.

Boxing Day sales are no longer the major event they once were, with many discounts available earlier online.

This year M&S, Next and other stores are not reopening until 27 December.

Analysts say the rise in prices over the past year - which has squeezed households' incomes - means people are less likely to hit the sales.

"The Boxing Day sales provide shoppers with a last-chance opportunity to splurge on themselves for the year," said Anita Naik from VoucherCodes.

"However, this is now a luxury many people are currently refraining from as the nation continues to contend with inflated prices amidst the cost-of-living crisis, therefore it's no surprise that this year, fewer of us will be splashing out in the sales."

The VoucherCodes report, produced using research from GlobalData, predicts the amount spent on every day from Christmas Day through to New Year's Eve will be lower than past year.

Overall, £13.5bn is expected to be spent over the week, down 3.8% from the year earlier.

Separate data from Mastercard indicated that spending between 1 November and Christmas Eve was up 2.6% from a year earlier.

However, Kien Tan, a senior retail adviser at PwC, told the BBC that many retailers still have "a lot more stock on their hands".

"The good news for you and me is there'll be bigger discounts post-Christmas," he said.

The popularity of the Boxing Day sales has been waning for some time, with Black Friday starting to become the bigger sales event. People are also more likely to spread their spending over the post-Christmas period.

"The changes in consumer behaviour over the Christmas shopping period that we've seen for the last decade will continue this year, with demand from shoppers steadily shifting away from Boxing Day to the three days between 27th and 29th December," said Diane Wehrle, chief executive at Rendle Intelligence and Insights.

"This suggests that we could see circa 20% fewer shoppers on Boxing Day than last year."

Given the increase in shopping online, Ms Wherle says "it's no surprise that Boxing Day is less of an iconic day than in the past".

"For many consumers that do venture out, it is much more of a leisure trip, with the focus on dining out and the top up being the opportunity to browse the shops."

Read Entire Article