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November 29, 2013

Christmas shoppers to spend over £10bn online

Christmas shoppers to spend over £10bn onlineMost Christmas shoppers are expected to buy more than half of their gifts online this year.

According to new research by Rackspace, there will be a total UK Christmas spending pot of over £18 billion – and about £10 billion of that will be spent online.

The survey of 2,000 UK adults, conducted by OnePoll for Rackspace, reveals that the average overall Christmas budget will be £375, with 35% of respondents saying they intend to spend less in 2013. However, 41% are still unsure of what their total budget will be. And 56% say they intend to spend more than half of their budget online.

Despite the convenience of online shopping, 63% of respondents said they were disappointed with an element of their online shopping last year. The most annoying issues are complicated check-out procedures (33%) and slow websites (28%). These frustrations led to 48% abandoning their purchase and 34% trying a different website.

The number of online shoppers using tablets and smartphones has increased dramatically in a year. 21% of UK adults say they will shop online using a tablet (up from 12% in 2012), while shopping on smartphones is up from 11% to 16%.

The survey also revealed:

  • Women are more intolerant of slow websites than men and are more likely to abandon a purchase.
  • Consumers choose online shopping mostly for convenience, followed by price. A quarter shop online to avoid Christmas crowds.
  • On Christmas Day, 65% of people will go online to contact friends and family and post pictures on social media.

"With competition high for that £10 billion, online retailers can't afford to lose custom due to frustrations caused by slow websites or check-outs," said Jeff Cotten, managing director, international at Rackspace. "Businesses need to ensure their websites have the support structures in place to cope with the surges of traffic and festive demand."

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