One third of shoppers spent less on shopping this holiday season
Between mid-December and mid-January InSites Consulting conducted a pan-European research project on consumers’ shopping behavior during the holiday season in Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Germany and UK. The study was held amongst members of the InSites’ TalkToChange Community. The project consisted out of a survey part and discussions on the forum of the community.
During the past holiday season 80% of the participants bought a present for at least one person. In most cases these were direct relatives: children, partner, parents… The British seem to take their friends more into account: 1 out of 2 buys presents for friends, compared to only 20% of the population in the other countries. The Dutch buy the least presents in general: only 50% of them buy something for someone.
On average 40% of the people have donated money to a good cause, the French are at the low end (with only 20%), while 50% of the British are supporting good causes.
Shopping budgets were on average around 350 Euros in total. But, one third of shoppers indicate that they spent less on shopping this year compared to last year. In France this number even raises to half of the population!
Biggest frustrations during shopping were the busy and overcrowded stores, as well as the long waiting lanes at cash registers. Having no inspiration is also an important one.
Dos and don’ts
- Typical presents people buy are books, perfume, cosmetics and clothing. From these 4, only books are also in the top 4 of presents people like to receive
- Although, the British are tired of receiving books and food products, they still buy them as a gift for others.
- For males clothing, perfume, cosmetics and jewelry are gifts that they rather do not want to receive again in the future!
- Wrong presents for females are food articles (like chocolates) and alcoholic beverages
- Females are very keen on jewelry (38%) and wellness deals (35%), but on the other hand it’s something they rarely give to someone else.
- Males buy more gift vouchers and females like to receive gift vouchers better, so we have a match here!
- A gift voucher seems to be the ideal gift. And especially those for wellness deals and tickets for events. Both males and females are happy with these choices.
- Gift vouchers are most popular in Belgium and least in the Netherlands.
Tom De Ruyck, Senior ForwaR&D Lab Consultant explains: “It’s clear that we live in a so-called ‘experience economy’ these days: traditional presents become less popular and gift vouchers which can be turned-in to really ‘do’ something are more popular than ever before. This trend also reflects in people’s wishes for this New Year. They are longing for more time to relax and to spend on their hobbies. I believe that due to the economical crisis people downsized their ambitions for the future. They wish to be happy with what they already have!”
People’s wishes for 2010 are all about ‘being happy’! If we take a closer look at the concept of ‘happiness’, we can identify some key dimensions: being healthy (both their own health as the condition of relatives and friends), having a job in general is also one that pops-up quite often. People feel more insecure about their jobs! We may assume that there is an influence of the economical crisis here. Other dimensions are: finding some peace and rest, besides having more time for themselves and just being satisfied with the way your life goes!
Want to find out more about this study? Contact Tom De Ruyck