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2021 E-Commerce Holiday Shopping Trends in the U.S. and UK

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At the finish of the day, advertising and marketing is supposed to make folks joyful. It doesn’t matter in case your target market is sipping Bellini’s below the Space Needle, or catching a present in the West End, each individual deserves to be delighted. Especially throughout the vacation season.

So, whereas twinkling lights and home-cooked meals are certain to spark pleasure this season, it’s additionally incumbent on the marketer to ship on the promise of pleasure this festive season. Which requires entrepreneurs to assume from the buyer’s viewpoint.

At Iterable, we’re massive on folks and pleasure. Our mission, in reality, is to attach folks to the merchandise that convey them pleasure. Keeping a pulse on martech trade tendencies and shopper preferences is important to making sure we ship on this mission.

Last 12 months, we surveyed over 1,000 shoppers throughout the U.S. Our outcomes confirmed that regardless that shoppers have been involved about the upcoming vacation season, there was a possibility for retailers to make an influence by selecting the proper timing and channels to share their advertising and marketing messages. This 12 months, we wished to go international with our analysis and discover out the place procuring tendencies converge and diverge throughout two main markets: the U.S. and UK.

Here’s what we discovered in our ballot of 1,500 shoppers throughout the U.S. and UK:

Different Shopping Trends Between UK and U.S. Consumers

1. Both U.S. and UK will spend on-line (however UK will spend greater than in years previous).

Ok, it’s solely October. But Christmas cheer has by no means been depending on timing.

This 12 months, 51% of UK consumers are planning on spending extra this vacation season.

And the place are they planning on spending it? Online, in fact! COVID-19 accelerated the adoption of e-commerce. We weren’t stunned after we discovered that 84% of U.S. consumers and 86% of UK consumers plan to finish not less than half of their procuring on-line this vacation season.

Brands can seize the better UK market share by focusing their efforts on first-time prospects. Attract prospects with the proper mindset and profile—the ones who’ve the potential to turn into loyal prospects.

And keep in mind, a primary buy could possibly be the begin of a buyer journey. The actual progress potential usually comes from growing repeat and returning prospects.

2. In the UK, consumers want promotions which have a tone of belief and transparency.

2021 is all about personalization. But the proper message, at the proper time, on the proper gadget solely goes to date. Now, entrepreneurs must concentrate on touchdown the proper tone in their promotions.

We requested shoppers to assume again over the final six months, and inform us which attributes greatest describe the tone of their favourite promotion from manufacturers.

For 29% of our UK respondents, promotions with a clear and trusting tone took precedence.

Take a glance the place different tones stand on the promotional hierarchy:

  • Transparent and Trusting (29%)
  • Empathetic and Comforting (23%)
  • Inspirational and Motivational (11%)
  • Cutting Edge and Exciting (13%)

Transparency is all the time a greatest follow in the case of shopper messaging, and this season, with the rise in provide chain points and transport issues, manufacturers have a possibility to set a precedent of belief early on.

Brands must be trustworthy with prospects, setting expectations and guaranteeing they’ve all the pieces in place for gross sales success, whether or not that’s transport timelines or inventory availability. The vacation season is an unimaginable time to seize new prospects and set the precedent for a mutually useful and trusting relationship, setting your self up for fulfillment past the season.

3. Brands Should Strategize to Ensure Your Promotional Campaigns Are Seen.

There are distinctive enterprise makes use of for various advertising and marketing channels however the secret is understanding how your buyer, as a person, makes use of every channel. Communicating along with your prospects in a approach that they’re comfy with is essential to optimizing your technique and, in flip, can improve prospects’ LTV.

For the majority (56.2%) of UK shoppers, email leads as the channel of selection in the case of receiving promotional messages.

With a persistently excessive ROI, email communication is a crucial software for any advertising and marketing workforce.

Next in recognition, at nearly 10%, a model’s web site. According to professional internet designers Fernandez, Duke and Brown, “It takes about 50 milliseconds (that’s 0.05 seconds) for users to form an opinion about your website that determines whether they like your site or not, whether they’ll stay or leave.” For customers to get to your web site and keep there, the UX must be intuitive and frictionless on cell and desktop. Upon their first look of your web site, customers ought to know precisely the place to click on to finish the activity they got down to do. After all, folks use computer systems for his or her ease and effectivity. If your web site isn’t making the expertise simpler, another person’s web site will.

Similar Shopping Trends Between U.S. and UK Consumers

Apart from soccer versus soccer, are we actually all that totally different? At instances, preferences do converge.

1. Creating an Emotional Connection Matters Across the Board.

Our shopper survey made one procuring development abundantly clear: relationships matter.

More than three-quarters of UK and U.S. respondents (76%) reported that they’re extra prone to buy from a model they’ve an emotional connection to.

While it is a slight lower from final 12 months’s findings (83%), the statistic remains to be substantial. Given this continued majority desire from respondents, mission-driven statements from manufacturers nonetheless maintain excessive worth in 2021.

When taking a look at the knowledge on a generational degree, nonetheless, there are nuances entrepreneurs ought to pay attention to in their efforts to emotionally join with goal audiences. Younger generations strongly want a connection to the manufacturers they store with. 90% of Gen Zers and 85% of millennials say they’re extra prone to store with a model they’ve an emotional reference to, versus solely 60% of child boomers.

Of course, we all know that it’s actually obscure how somebody feels about your model and then truly use that information to craft related campaigns. And even when you realize in the present day, tomorrow their emotions might change.

Understanding how prospects are feeling about your model messaging, in real-time and throughout channels, can inform smarter methods in the case of tone, and assist construct an emotional connection along with your viewers. Consider leveraging instruments that may help these metrics and measurements.

2. Yes, Black Friday Shopping is Still in Vogue

We wished to take the guessing out of the sport for manufacturers this vacation season, so we requested consumers “When do you plan on completing the majority of your holiday shopping?”. The prime two responses? Black Friday and November in common.

41% of U.S. respondents and 49% of UK respondents plan on finishing their vacation procuring throughout the month of November, with a concentrate on Black Friday.

Global manufacturers would do nicely to do not forget that Black Friday is a agency fixture in the UK procuring calendar as nicely. Whilst it doesn’t have the tie to Thanksgiving, manufacturers must work exhausting to face out and guarantee UK consumers know what to anticipate from their gross sales occasion. Find a approach to differentiate your model messaging in November. Lean in on the above studying to seize buyer consideration.

3. Local is Lucrative in All … Locales.

As our post-pandemic procuring personalities begin to settle, one procuring development has actually crystallized: procuring small. Consumers are ditching the giant scale procuring facilities in favor of searching at native outlets, spending their money at the village boutique and spreading the phrase about impartial manufacturers.

29% of UK consumers mentioned they are going to store extra at small or native companies than earlier

UK consumers ranked supporting small or native companies as their third highest precedence when buying from a model this vacation season—above customer support, on-line critiques, and number of choice.

While shelter-in-place existence may have escalated the store small development to new heights, shoppers are possible gravitating in the direction of native markets due to a brand new psychology that emerged earlier this 12 months. In our earlier ballot, we discovered that 87% of shoppers have been extra receptive to a model’s messages in the event that they know the firm’s beliefs and values.

What do these findings imply for manufacturers and companies? For small companies, it means you’re already set-up for fulfillment. However, smaller outlets nonetheless want to make sure they’re assembly shopper expectations in different methods, maybe by elevating e-commerce experiences.

Larger manufacturers, on the different hand, have a bit extra work to do, and ought to contemplate integrating the interesting “shop local” ideologies into their companies. What makes small companies stand out to shoppers? Personality and neighborhood. Shopping with a small enterprise, for a lot of, means investing in the entrepreneurial ideology. By leveling up personalization efforts, massive field manufacturers can emulate a “boutique” expertise.

Brand-Customer Relationships Must Go Beyond the Transaction

To thrive in in the present day’s digital economic system, entrepreneurs and companies need to put the buyer at the heart of all the pieces they do. Today’s trendy shoppers anticipate manufacturers to grasp them on a human degree. What does this imply in follow? It means manufacturers delivering individualized, genuine experiences in relation to procuring tendencies and what prospects are doing throughout each conventional and digital interactions—anytime, wherever.

Now that you’ve got the insights, it’s time to behave. (And we’re right here to assist!) Schedule a demo to get in contact with our workforce.


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