The recent report from Adobe Digital Insights reveals that UK shoppers significantly increased their online spending during the extended Christmas trading period. From November 1 to December 31, online spending saw a 3.7% year-on-year growth, totaling £24.4 billion. This surge in spending can be attributed to the popularity of major discounting days like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Boxing Day.

Black Friday alone saw customers spend a whopping £1.04 billion, a 4.1% increase compared to the previous year. Cyber Monday’s total spend amounted to £881 million, showing a growth of 7.4%. On Boxing Day, shoppers spent £461.8 million, a 4.4% rise from the previous year. Overall, the total online spending in 2023 reached an impressive £111.2 billion.

Additionally, the report highlights the increasing use of buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) services by Britons during the festive season. Shoppers spent £3.3 billion using BNPL services, bringing the total amount spent in this sector in 2023 to £16.8 billion. However, experts suggest that this could lead to a potential negative impact on early 2024 spending as consumers begin to pay off their BNPL bills.

The report’s findings are based on the analysis of hundreds of millions of visits to retail sites made by UK shoppers during the festive season. It also tracked the prices of 100 million SKUs across 18 product categories. The most popular purchases included personal beauty care products, fragrances, and luggage/handbags.

Vivek Pandya, Lead Analyst at Adobe Digital Insights, commented on the report, noting the slow start to online spending in 2023 but the significant acceleration towards the end of the year, particularly during the holiday period. Pandya attributes this growth to retailers’ deep discounting strategies and the increasing use of BNPL services, indicating that consumers are still conscious of their financial situation.

Overall, the report emphasizes the notable increase in online spending by UK shoppers during the festive season. This surge in spending, combined with the popularity of major discounting events and the use of BNPL services, has allowed retailers to take advantage of consumer demand. However, it remains to be seen how this increased spending, coupled with potential debt repayment in early 2024, will impact the retail sector.

Useful links:
1. Retail Gazette: Provides insights and news about the retail industry.
2. BBC Business: Offers comprehensive coverage of business news, including consumer trends and retail updates.