Consumers on trend to spend big this silly season

The eight weeks from November 1 until Boxing Day is what we define as the Season of Spending. It has always been the highest period of consumer spending in the calendar year. What may come as a surprise to some, is that 2020 was the highest level of spend to date as Australians spent more than $55 billion in retail sales(1).

What will 2021’s Season of Spending bring?

It’s become clearer that our country’s road to economic recovery and ‘normalcy’ is counting on two main factors; consumers continuing to spend and the rollout of vaccinations(2). The most recent target from the government suggests vaccinating 80% of the population aged 16 and over should be possible by December, and fully vaccinated by early January 2022(3).

Given the vaccine is likely to provide consumers and businesses further confidence in our economic recovery, and consumer confidence influences spend, signs are pointing to the second half of this year looking positive.

How will you impact Christmas purchase decisions?

Australians are planning and buying for Christmas earlier, making the eight weeks lead-up to Christmas more important than ever. We are seeing consumers thinking about gifting well ahead of the season, with 22% considering their purchases 3 to 6 months before Christmas(4). By the end of November, the majority of people (65%) will have completed their Christmas shopping, leaving 35% to do theirs in December(5).

Buying local and Australian-made products

If last year’s actions are anything to go by, we could expect to see people hit the shops as early as October and with international borders still likely to be closed come Summer, the economy will benefit from consumers spending locally(6).

Junkee Media’s latest study found young Australians are reconsidering their buying habits abroad and buying local as a result of the Covid. More than half said they were buying Australian-made, with those who identify as female driving up this average to 72%(7).

Consumers are expecting more

Brands have experienced significant e-commerce growth as a result of Covid by adapting to selling across multiple channels and building brand presence more than ever before. From this high level of service, consumers are expecting more from their online and in-store shopping experiences, so understanding how best to engage your audience and their evolving buying behaviour this season is vital.

Omnichannel shopping statistics say 71% of shoppers use mobiles in stores. They’re doing so out of convenience — to find what they like, how much it costs, then simply pick it up in the right section(8). Out of Home when combined with digital has been found to boost the performance search by a massive 54%(9). It’s an immersive media that cuts through the clutter and inspires your audience to seek out your brand online via mobile.

It’s clear that people will be seeking out real-life experiences and spending more than they ever have during the coming silly season. However, the question remains, which brands will make the most of this important period by connecting with their consumers enough to ensure they come out on top?

Sources

  1. National Retail Association, Feb 2021 [https://www.nra.net.au/2020-the-biggest-christmas-on-record/]
  2. Tracking Australia’s COVID vaccine rollout numbers, August 2021 [https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-03-02/charting-australias-covid-vaccine-rollout/13197518?nw=0]
  3. Guardian, August 2021 [https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/jul/02/australia-four-phase-plan-manage-covid-whas-is-pm-scott-morrison-point-step-stage-pathway-pandemic-exit]
  4. Think With Google, Sept 2020 [https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/intl/en-gb/consumer-insights/consumer-trends/christmas-retail-strategy-trends/]
  5. Retail Safari [https://www.retailsafari.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/2020-Aus-Christmas-Shopping-Intentions-Report-Final.pdf]
  6. Monash University, November 2020 [https://www2.monash.edu/impact/articles/retail/earlier-cheaper-how-covid-has-changed-our-christmas-shopping-habits/\]
  7. Junkee Media 2021 Youth Research, Pollinate 6th April – 3rd Mat 2021, N=2680 Australians aged 16-40
  8.  Save My Cent [https://savemycent.com/omnichannel-statistics/]
  9. Kinetic [https://kineticww.com/uk/how-to-combine-ooh-and-mobile-to-supercharge-campaigns-and-get-better-results/]