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Christmas Shopping Habits - UK - February 2018

“It was a remarkably good Christmas given that all the economic indicators suggested that consumers should be becoming more cautious and because the comparison was with a retail boom in the final quarter of 2016. In the event, people were prepared to borrow to cover the fact that real incomes have been falling. Mintel's own consumer confidence indicators show that consumers are not concerned about their financial situation, so 2018 should start well, even if on balance there are good reasons to be cautious for the rest of the year.”
– Richard Perks, Director of Retail Research

This report looks at the following areas:

  • Retailing is becoming more demanding – there’s nowhere to hide
  • Why online is having such an impact on the high street
  • Christmas shopping goes mobile

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Products covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • The market
            • It was a fairly strong Christmas
              • Figure 1: Retail sales growth, value and volume growth, 2015-17
            • Black Friday
              • Figure 2: November and December share of annual retail sales, 2007-17
            • Demand should have been weaker
              • Figure 3: Mintel’s Consumer confidence tracker, June 2014-December 2017
            • Prospects for 2018
              • Online sees further strong growth
                • Figure 4: Online share of all retail sales, 2007-17
                • Figure 5: Online growth by broad retail sector, 2017
              • Companies and brands
                • Online pureplayers enjoy strongest performance
                  • Figure 6: Major sectors, sales growth excluding VAT, in December 2017
                • A good Christmas for food retailers
                  • A mixed picture for clothing retailers
                    • Weaker performance from the mixed goods retailers
                      • Advertising spend falls 5%
                        • The consumer
                          • Multichannel shopping continues to grow in popularity
                            • Figure 7: Online vs store buying, Christmas 2017
                          • Smartphone usage on the rise
                            • Figure 8: Devices used to buy gifts online, 2017
                          • Spending up 4% on 2016
                            • Figure 9: Amount spent on gifts, Christmas 2017
                          • Clothing tops the list of gifts bought
                            • Figure 10: Products bought as gifts, Christmas 2017
                          • December still the most important month for gift buying
                            • Figure 11: Months when gifts bought, Christmas 2017
                          • 23% shopped online on Christmas Day
                            • Figure 12: How people planned and bought gifts, Christmas 2017
                          • Promotions are undermining trust in pricing
                            • Figure 13: Attitudes towards buying gifts, Christmas 2017
                          • What we think
                          • Issues and Insights

                            • Retailing is becoming more demanding – there’s nowhere to hide
                              • The facts
                                • The Implications
                                  • Why online is having such an impact on the high street
                                    • The facts
                                      • The implications
                                        • Christmas shopping goes mobile
                                          • The facts
                                            • The implications
                                            • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                              • It was a strong Christmas
                                                • Black Friday continues to grow
                                                  • Demand should have been weaker
                                                    • Prospects for 2018
                                                      • Online sees further strong growth
                                                      • Retail Sales Performance

                                                        • Retail sales up 4.4% or 1.4%
                                                          • Continuing boom
                                                            • Figure 14: Retail sales value growth, 2014-17
                                                            • Figure 15: Retail sales volume growth, 2014-17
                                                        • Black Friday

                                                              • Figure 16: November and December share of annual retail sales, 2007-17
                                                              • Figure 17: Total spending (excluding VAT) on Black Friday promotions, 2013-17
                                                            • Impact on Christmas shopping
                                                              • How long will it last?
                                                                • December still all important
                                                                • Market Drivers

                                                                  • Consumer confidence dips during 2017
                                                                    • Figure 18: Mintel’s Consumer confidence tracker, June 2014 - December 2017
                                                                  • Inflation is rising faster than wage growth
                                                                    • Figure 19: Inflation and wages growth, 2014-17
                                                                  • Brexit continues to create uncertainty
                                                                    • First interest rates rise for a decade
                                                                      • Consumer credit is rising
                                                                        • Figure 20: Consumer credit outstanding as % all consumer spending, 2007-17
                                                                      • Outlook for 2018
                                                                      • Online

                                                                        • Accelerated shift to online in 2016 and 2017
                                                                          • Figure 21: Online share of all retail sales, 2007-17
                                                                          • Figure 22: Online growth by broad retail sector, 2017
                                                                          • Figure 23: Online share of all retail sales by sector, 2008 and 2017
                                                                          • Figure 24: Online share of all non-food retailers sales, 2008-17
                                                                          • Figure 25: Online share of sector sales, 2017
                                                                        • Online growth in the final quarter slows
                                                                          • Figure 26: Online retail sales growth, 2016-17
                                                                        • Where next?
                                                                        • Companies and Brands – What You Need to Know

                                                                          • Online pureplayers enjoy strongest performance
                                                                            • A good Christmas for food retailers
                                                                              • A mixed picture for clothing retailers
                                                                                • Weaker performance from the mixed goods retailers
                                                                                  • Advertising spend falls 5%
                                                                                  • Christmas Trading Performance

                                                                                      • Sector data
                                                                                        • Winners and losers by sector
                                                                                            • Figure 27: Major sectors, sales growth in December 2017
                                                                                            • Figure 28: Sector sales, December 2017
                                                                                            • Figure 29: Major retail sectors, sales growth December and Q4 2017
                                                                                          • Food retailers
                                                                                            • Benchmarks
                                                                                              • The companies
                                                                                                • Looking forward
                                                                                                  • Figure 30: Food retailers, Christmas performance, 2017
                                                                                                • Where next?
                                                                                                  • Clothing and footwear retailers
                                                                                                    • Benchmarks
                                                                                                      • The companies
                                                                                                          • Figure 31: Clothing retailers, Christmas performance, 2017
                                                                                                        • Where next?
                                                                                                          • Mixed goods retailers
                                                                                                            • Benchmarks
                                                                                                              • The companies
                                                                                                                  • Figure 32: Mixed goods retailers, including Department stores, Christmas Performance, 2017
                                                                                                                • Where next?
                                                                                                                  • Other sectors
                                                                                                                    • Benchmarks
                                                                                                                      • Figure 33: Other stores: December and final quarter, 2017
                                                                                                                    • The companies
                                                                                                                        • Figure 34: Home and other miscellaneous retailers’ Christmas performance, 2017
                                                                                                                      • Where next?
                                                                                                                      • Advertising and Marketing Activity

                                                                                                                          • Advertising spend falls 5%
                                                                                                                            • Figure 35: Recorded above-the-line, online display and direct mail total advertising expenditure by UK retailers in November and December, 2013-17
                                                                                                                          • Amazon the biggest advertiser
                                                                                                                            • Figure 36: Leading UK retail advertisers in November and December: Recorded above-the-line, online display and direct mail total advertising expenditure, 2013-17
                                                                                                                          • TV accounts for half of all spending
                                                                                                                            • Figure 37: UK retailers advertising expenditure in November and December, by media type, 2013-17
                                                                                                                          • Nielsen Ad Intel coverage
                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                                                                            • Multichannel shopping continues to grow in popularity
                                                                                                                              • Smartphone usage on the rise
                                                                                                                                • Spending up 4% on 2016
                                                                                                                                  • Clothing tops the list of gifts bought
                                                                                                                                    • December still the most important month for gift buying
                                                                                                                                      • 23% shopped online on Christmas Day
                                                                                                                                        • Promotions are undermining trust in pricing
                                                                                                                                        • Who Bought and How They Shopped

                                                                                                                                            • How they bought
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 38: Online vs store buying, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                            • Multichannel shopping on the rise
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 39: Growth of multi-channel shopping in Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                            • Over-55s take up multichannel shopping
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 40: Multichannel versus single channel shopping, by age and household income, Christmas 2016 and Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                              • Click-and-collect reached its peak?
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 41: Profile of in-store and online gift buyers, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                • Smartphone usage continues to rise
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 42: Devices used to buy gifts online, 2017
                                                                                                                                                • Under-35s shift to smartphone shopping
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 43: Christmas gift buyers using their smartphone to shop, by age group, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                              • What They Spent

                                                                                                                                                • Average spend hits £381
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 44: Mean Average spent on gifts, by age group, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                • Parents/guardians spend double that of non-parent/guardians
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 45: Average spend on Christmas gifts by age of children in the household, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                • Spending vs Christmas 2016
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 46: Those who spent more or less on Christmas Gifts in 2017 than 2016
                                                                                                                                              • What They Bought

                                                                                                                                                  • Clothing is the most popular gift
                                                                                                                                                    • Beauty and personal care gifts purchased by almost half
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 47: Goods bought as gifts, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                      • Electricals and homeware bought by younger shoppers
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 48: Profile of gift buyers by what they bought, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                      • Parents of young teenagers buy from the widest range of categories
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 49: Repertoire Analysis of categories of product purchased as gifts for Christmas 2017, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                    • When They Shop for Christmas Gifts

                                                                                                                                                      • A third spend most in November
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 50: Months when gifts bought, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                        • Women shop earlier than men
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 51: When they shop for Christmas gifts, by gender, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                        • Spending peaks among those who shop early
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 52: When they shop for Christmas gifts, by what they spend, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                      • Planning and Buying Gifts

                                                                                                                                                        • 16-35s most likely to plan ahead
                                                                                                                                                          • More men shop on Christmas Day than Boxing Day
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 53: How people planned and bought gifts, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                          • Affluent consumers most likely to buy gifts on credit
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 54: Profile of those agreeing with the planning and buying statements, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                          • Parents are most likely to use Black Friday for Christmas gifts
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 55: Proportion of Black Friday purchases that were Christmas gifts, December 2017
                                                                                                                                                        • Attitudes Towards Gift Buying

                                                                                                                                                            • Promotions are Undermining Trust in Pricing
                                                                                                                                                              • 27% think it’s better to worry about cost later
                                                                                                                                                                • Personalising makes gifts more meaningful
                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 56: Attitudes towards buying gifts, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 57: Profile of those agreeing / disagreeing with the attitude statements, Christmas 2017
                                                                                                                                                              • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                                                                                • Data sources
                                                                                                                                                                  • Abbreviations
                                                                                                                                                                    • Consumer research methodology

                                                                                                                                                                    Christmas Shopping Habits - UK - February 2018

                                                                                                                                                                    US $2,552.20 (Excl.Tax)