Boxing Day sales to set a record

U.K. customers will spend up to £2.9 billion on Boxing Day

U.K. customers will spend up to £2.9 billion on Boxing Day

U.K. customers are ready to hunt as Boxing Day starts. According to estimates, U.K. customers will spend between £2.4 billion and £2.9 billion during this “shopping holiday”. The biggest shopping day of the year is expected to also set a record for online shopping. Certainly U.K. retailers will welcome shoppers with open arms as this year an increasing number of them is struggling due to tough economic conditions.

Boxing Day to start

According to different surveys, U.K. customers will leave in shops between £2.4 billion and £2.9 billion. Yet while one in 10 Britons are prepared to get dirty and go for a hunt, almost 5 million will avoid the craziness of Boxing Day by looking for sale deals in the comfortable sanctity of their houses. But with retailers slashing prices everyone wants to get their hands on Boxing Day deals. Yet the findings of another survey show that nearly half of its respondents were not going to  buy anything in the post-Christmas sales, including Boxing Day sales.

Data also shows one very important thing, namely, the 2012 holiday shopping season will be the “biggest and busiest ever” for online retailers in the United Kingdom. According to Experian, online retailers will see U.K. customer spend as much as £480 only on Boxing Day. Also visits to retail websites are to see a growth of approximately 30 percent on 2011, with roughly 126 million visits on Boxing Day.

Certainly online retailers will seize the opportunity. Amazon.com.uk was even operating on Christmas Day as it knew that owners of new electronic devices would love to buy some downloads and upgrades for their “toys.” The team management of the company was right as they saw the retailer’s sales approximately treble over the last five years.

Surveys also indicate that approximately 10 million customers, or one in five Britons, will leave over £46 in shops on Boxing Day. Yet Britons, who want to visit London and high streets on Boxing Day, have to be prepared for some obstacles as the union Aslef and tube drivers walked out so that London Underground services are likely to be disrupted.

UK retailers in trouble

The figures on the possible outcome of Boxing Day sale might be encouraging as just couple days before Christmas business recovery firm Begbies Traynor issued its survey showing that U.K. retailers are struggling amid tough economic conditions and growing competitiveness. According to research, approximately 140 U.K. retailers were in a critical condition in the final quarter of the year, facing the possibility of closures.  Over 13.700 U.K. retailers were in so-called “significant distress”.

In addition, the British Retail Consortium underlined that the 2012 holiday shopping spending was “acceptable but not exceptional,” adding that the poor accessibility, lack of parking lots and weak consumer demand were  the main causes of the actual state of affairs.

Yet even with good results from Boxing Day sales many U.K. retailers will have to close their doors as they will probably fail to restore profitability.

Richard Meryn
Richard Meryn, Associate Editor Industry Leaders Magazine (www.industryleadersmagazine.com)

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