By Laura Lane, Senior Marketing and Communications Manager, Channel Advisor
Every year October to January signifies a special time in the retail calendar and in 2020 it is proving more unique than ever.
According to research by Channel Advisor and Retail Gazette, Covid-19 is accelerating the shift to online with 50% of consumers saying they plan to spend more online this year.
It is anticipated that this year consumers will be heading online to hunt for presents and decorations, with 15% of retailers expecting a quarter of their peak season sales to be online, 19% expecting the figure to be close to half and another 19% expecting three quarters to be online.
When retailers and consumers were about their shopping plans, both said they would be starting earlier than usual.
51% of retailers said they planned promotions before November and only 16% are not planning any holiday discounts at all. This is a smart strategy as we know there’s a worry about carrier capacity this year and the more retailers can smooth those peaks, the more likely they will be to deliver on time.
And it’s a good thing too. Back in August 14% of consumers had already begun, 14% planned to start in October, 28% planned to start in October, 34% in November and only 10% in December.
Retailers thought their customers would shop own their own website (71%), but consumers had other plans. 62% of respondents said they were going to shop at Amazon and 70% of consumers said they planned to check prices on Amazon first.
The research shows that 58% of consumers have discovered products by browsing marketplaces (Amazon, eBay, etc.) yet 33% of retailers surveyed said they don’t sell on any at all. Though it was reassuring to hear that 31% plan to expand to more marketplaces in 2021.
The rise of social commerce is one of the defining retail trends of the past five years. Since the pandemic began, consumers are researching more and more on social channels.
In January, the biggest growth was social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. In January 19% of consumers said they research products on Facebook and by late August this figure had jumped to 31%. It’s a similar story for Instagram, 16% were using the platform for research in January and this rose to 25% in late August.
For more information you can read the full report here or watch the webinar at https://go.channeladvisor.com/UK-RG-Peak-Trends-Webinar-OnDemand-Q420.html.
Image by justynafaliszek from Pixabay