Christmas Countdown and Retail Predictions for 2015

Christmas Countdown and Retail Predictions for 2015

17th December 2014

With just a handful of days left for consumers to gain that special Christmas bargain in time for the big day, how are the retailers coping this year with demand?

After Thursday 18th December, any last minute online presents will more than likely have to pay extra for one-day delivery. With the demands from Black Friday and Cyber Monday just a couple of weeks before the Christmas rush, retailers and delivery companies have definitely felt the strain this month. On Black Friday 2014, an estimated £810 million was spent online; the biggest online shopping day of the year in the UK. Black Friday is a US shopping event that takes place the day after Thanksgiving, but has been brought over to the UK by companies such as Amazon and Asda, which is owned by Walmart. In 2014, online traffic to UK retail sites grew by a staggering 60pc on Black Friday. The increased confidence in the ability of online retail has grown dramatically in the past 10 years. Partnered up with events such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday, it can make quite a challenging time for retailers to rise to the demand of their products. Cyber Monday generated sales of £720 million, making it the second biggest spending day of the year.

While some companies were overwhelmed by the pressures of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, those with strong retail management systems thrived. The retailer, John Lewis, had their biggest sales week on record, as shoppers flocked to their stores at these times of sales. John Lewis said revenues for the week ending November 29th hit a staggering £179.1 million, with an increase of 22pc as the same week the previous year. Whereas Debenhams found the manic orders a struggle to cope with the demand. Their website even issued a warning that ‘due to Black Friday demand, some of our standard deliveries may run late’. This of course left many shoppers unhappy and feeling let down. So to were the retailers let down by inadequate systems.

Retail Predictions for 2015

  • Online Pureplays are predicted to hold a 30% share of online global luxury spend by 2020. Global online luxury markets will more than double in the next five years as major brands continue to increase their range availability online. The Pureplay market is forecasted to outpace total online by 65% between 2015 and 2020, as online retailers invest in customer engagement.
  • 2015 will be the year of the mobile. Global m-commerce sales are predicted to reach $120 billion globally in 2015 and predicts that 50% of UK-related retail queries will be from a smartphone this Christmas. In order for this to happen, e-commerce retailers and advertisers need to make sure they optimise their adverts and have fully functioning websites for all channels, including mobile. It is estimated that location-targeted ads could account for 25% of all mobile advertising buys in 2015.
  • 2015 is predicted to see social media have an even stronger impact on e-commerce sales than ever before. It has become very apparent that social media does not just promote a brand, but allows your target audience to engage and connect with your product.
  • Keep an eye out for wearable technology! Google Glass has taken the world by storm and with Apple’s new iWatch about to launch in 2015, it can only lead to bigger and more extravagant products for the years to come.
  • Having the ability to deliver quicker than ever. Nowadays the average retail consumer does not only hope for a quick and easy shipping experience, but they now expect it. It has become so available by many retailers, that as a result, certain companies may lose out on customers by not having speedy deliveries that other companies can offer for the same or similar products.
  • iBeacon technology from Apple is an exciting new medium, which retailers including House of Fraser and Tesco will be taking full advantage of in 2015. This will allow, via a Bluetooth connection, a customer on a smartphone to check out any promotional information and/or discounts when pointing their phone at a store window. Allowing businesses and retailers to track customer shopping habits, to utilise and increase revenue.

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