This coming Monday is predicted to be busiest online shopping day pre-Christmas, with 113 million visits to online retail sites, but could be eclipsed by 'middle' Cyber Monday
Insight from the Experian Hitwise online competitive intelligence tool has indicates that Christmas 2013 will be the biggest ever for online retailers in the UK.
In line with other predictions of a bumper retail Christmas online this year, the Experian data has forecast 113 million visits to UK retail websites on Monday 2 December – known as ‘Cyber Monday’ in the UK – up 1% on the same day last year.
But the data company is also coining 9 December, ‘middle’ Cyber Monday. As Cyber Monday is early this year and people increasingly expect retailers to be able to deliver gifts closer to Christmas, Experian said it anticipates there will be over 110 million visits to retail websites on this day, and this date could even eclipse Cyber Monday itself in terms of visits.
UK online shopping obsession grows
Other key online retail predictions for December 2013 reveal 400 million hours will be spent shopping online by the UK internet population this December, a 7.5% year-on-year increase on December 2012 (372 million hours). And the average consumer will spend eight hours browsing, researching and buying Christmas presents online this December, again representing a 7.5% year-on-year increase.
UK online retailers will also reach a major benchmark this December, topping 3 billion visits and representing 7% growth year-on-year. This led Experian to predict that UK shoppers will make 150 million retail transactions online in December 2013, spending around £10.5 billion online shopping this Christmas. This tallies with the other recent spending predictions, all of which suggest spending will top the £10-billion mark this year.
And Boxing Day (26 December) will be the single biggest online shopping day of 2013. UK internet users will make 115 million visits to retail websites, up 2% year-on-year.
More unpredictable shopping habits
"This Christmas is going to be the biggest ever in terms of online retail visits and December 2013 should be the first month that the UK reaches the 3 billion benchmark for visits to retail websites," commented James Murray, digital insights manager at Experian Marketing Services
"What we don't expect to see this year is the well-defined peaks and troughs of shopping activity over Christmas. With the growth of mobile and the ease of quick one-click shopping, we expect to see the homogenisation of shopping days as consumers are less confined in their shopping habits.
"Marketers need to ensure their campaigns address the cross-channel behaviours of today’s consumers and offer a seamless experience whether their customers are shopping on the High Street or on the go. For consumers this means an ever more convenient shopping experience, personalised to their needs.”