Nov 17, 2022
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Consumers doing more research, especially ahead of Black Friday - report

Nov 17, 2022

Online shoppers are researching goods more than ever before making a purchase, and interest ahead of Black Friday continues to accelerate, with searches increasing 30% year-on-year, according to latest Google data.

Photo: Pixabay/Public domain

Research for fashion and beauty remains strong. In the last three months, searches for ‘best coat’ increased over 387%, ‘best deals’ rose 50% and ‘best hair product’ also went up by 50%, according to a study based on the Google Retail Index, the research being conducted with partner Trinity McQueen.

A survey of some 5,000 UK shoppers ahead of Black Friday/Christmas also found that current economic uncertainties were top-of-mind for many and they’re expected to alter their seasonal shopping plans as a result, with Google Search Trends showing searches for “inflation” up 112% year-on-year among Britons.

For fashion consumers, 75% said “economic uncertainty” has impacted their plans this Christmas, yet 60% said they plan to spend the same amount as last year. The majority of fashion consumers said they spend one to two months gathering inspiration for Christmas shopping, however 20% buy on impulse.

Interestingly, 47% of fashion consumers have bought from a retailer new to them in the last six months, a significant increase on the pre-pandemic period when just 24% said the same.

On the sportwear consumer front, 80% said economic uncertainty has impacted their plans for Christmas although 25% said they intend to spend more than last Christmas. Some 43% of sportswear consumers will shop around for better deals/discounts this season as a result of current economic uncertainties.

Some 67% of sports shoppers have tried a new sports brand or retailer in the last six months. Sportwear consumers are less likely to shop in-store too — 29% less than general apparel consumers; and demand will be displaced to different days (during the upcoming football World Cup) rather than dip over the peak period.

On the beauty front, 80% of consumers plan to spend the same amount or less this Christmas, with 49% having bought from a new retailer in the last six months. More than half (57%) of beauty consumers said they browse online before an in-store purchase.

Kevin Mathers, MD, Retail at Google, said: “Our findings point to the fact that people are browsing more, are increasingly open to trying new brands, and respond best to omnichannel shopping experiences with 30% of UK shoppers today browsing online to decide what they’re going to buy before heading to a physical store to make the purchase. Retailers with strategies to capitalise on these trends will reap the rewards.”

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