Consumer Christmas shopping habits (2023)

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While you are optimising your dropshipping store for Christmas shoppers, take a glance at these trends and insights.

Consumer shopping habits during the 2023 festive season show surprising differences between consumer behaviour around the world. In our blog post, we have compiled 17 key survey findings to help you know more about Christmas shoppers in the UK, the US, Germany, and Australia.

How much will shoppers spend on Christmas gifts?

1. The highest spend on Christmas gifts in the USA since 2019

(Source: Deloitte, 2023)

Americans are looking forward to making Christmas 2023 a good one. The average expected holiday spend is USD $1,652 per consumer. This is higher than 2022 (USD $1,455), 2021 (USD $1,463), 2020 (USD $1,387), and 2019 (USD $1,496).

2. The highest spend on Christmas gifts in the UK since 2019

(Source: Finder, 2023)

The Brits are loosening their purse strings as well this Christmas. The average person in the UK will be spending £602 on Christmas gifts in 2023. This is higher than 2022 (£430), 2021 (£548), 2020 (£476), and 2019 (£513).

3. The British will be the biggest festive spenders in Europe

(Source: Statista, 2023)

It is forecast that the UK will collectively spend almost £85 billion on retail sales for Christmas 2023. Germany is forecast to take second place by spending £74 billion, followed by France at £63 billion, Italy at £38 billion, Spain at £26 billion, the Netherlands at £13 billion, and Belgium at £10 billion.

4. Aussie shoppers may increase Christmas gifting budgets in 2023

(Source: Roy Morgan, 2023, and Monash Business School, 2023)

In Australia, it's predicted that the average gifting spend per consumer will be AUD $650–1,000. Roy Morgan and the Australian Retailers Association predict a lower figure than 2022 (AUD $700).

However, a survey by the Australian Consumer and Retail Studies at Monash Business School found a higher predicted figure of AUD $1,088 per Australian consumer (including gifts for immediate family, extended family, themselves, and friends).

5. 3 out of 5 Germans plan to buy Christmas gifts in 2023

(Source: Mintel, 2023)

61% of Germans aren't letting the cost of living crisis affect their festive shopping and are planning to buy gifts. Sales figures during Christmas 2022 fell by almost 6% compared to 2021, however, shopping might increase this year.

Where will festive shoppers buy gifts?

6. 63% of US shoppers will purchase gifts online

(Source: Statista, 2023)

Americans are making the most of online shopping convenience in 2023. Purchasing Christmas gifts from online retailers leads the way, while 53% will buy from mass merchants such as Target and Best Buy. Only 24% will do festive shopping at department stores, and 25% will shop at off-price stores such as TK Maxx.

7. British Christmas shoppers will use a mix of online and in-store

(Source: Retail Week, 2023, and Voucher Codes, 2023)

According to Retail Week, 44% of British consumers said they will buy their Christmas gifts from online-only stores this year. Only 15% said they will buy from supermarkets, and 15% will buy from value retailers such as B&M Bargains and The Range.

Data from Voucher Codes shows tha in line with the last two years, British Christmas shoppers will predominantly go in-store for their gifts. £30.91 billion is expected to be spent online, while £54.01 billion will be spent in physical shops.

8. Australia prefers an instore Christmas experience

(Source: Monash Business School, 2023)

Physical brick-and-mortar shops are preferred by Australian festive shoppers by a mile. It's forecast that 80% of Aussies plan to buy gifts in-store. 44% said they will shop with online-only retailers, and 43% will shop online from stores that also have a physical presence.

9. Online shopping is a must for Germans this Christmas

(Source: Mintel, 2023)

A survey shows that 81% of Germans will be purchasing Christmas gifts from online retailers. Traditionally, Germany used to favour in-store shopping, however, online shopping took off in popularity post-pandemic.

What are consumers buying for Christmas 2023?

10. US shoppers will buy gift cards and travel (Source: The Conference Board, 2023)

According to a survey, 26% of Americans will purchase gift cards and travel getaways for others this Christmas. Meanwhile, 23% said they will purchase toys, 22% will buy electronics, 19% will buy jewellery, 18% will buy fashion and footwear, and 16% will buy sports goods.

11. Toys and electronics will be the most popular gifts in the UK

(Source: Voucher Codes, 2023)

It's forecast that the British will treat their families to toys (£2.18 billion) and electronics (£2.02 billion) for Christmas 2023. Clothing and footwear are predicted to be the third-most popular gift (£1.90 billion), followed by money and gift cards (£1.35 billion) and cosmetics (£1.15 billion).

12. Aussies will spend the most on clothing

(Source: Westpac, 2023)

Aside from the budget for Christmas food and drink, 29% of Australians are planning to splash most of their cash on clothes. 24% will purchase travel getaways, 14% will purchase new technology, and 13% will purchase entertainment.

13. Smartphones and travel are gifts that Germans will be buying

(Source: Statista, 2023)

Survey results have found that smartphones and travel getaways will be the most common gifts in Germany this Christmas.

Christmas payment methods

14. Three-quarters of Americans will pay for Christmas gifts by credit card

(Source: Nerd Wallet, 2023)

74% of US shoppers will use their credit card to pay for festive gifts. On average, they are expected to spend USD $680 with this payment method. 31% of those surveyed still hadn't paid their credit card debt from Christmas 2022.

This compares with 66% that plan to use cash to buy Christmas gifts in 2023, 28% plan to use savings, and 15% plan to use "buy now, pay later" (BNPL).

15. 15% of UK shoppers will use BNPL

(Source: Adobe Analytics, 2023, and eBay Ads, 2023)

Around one in seven British consumers intend to use BNPL for their Christmas shopping. It's estimated that a total of £3.7 billion will be spent on festive gifts using this payment method in 2023.

Only 12% of UK shoppers plan to spend more on credit cards or loans to cover the cost of Christmas, whereas the majority will use debit cards, cash, or savings.

16. 38% of Australians will use credit card reward points for Christmas shopping

(Source: Citi Group, 2023)

In Australia, one in three consumers is planning to use credit card reward points to help pay for the cost of Christmas gifts in 2023. Around 27% of Aussies have been shopping around for the best credit card rewards programmes with Christmas shopping in mind.

17. PayPal is the most popular payment method for German online shoppers

(Source: Statista, 2023)

This year, PayPay has continued to take the lead as the most-used payment method online for German consumers. The second place goes to the online payment provider, Trustly.

Recommendations for dropshipping businesses

This data is helpful for adjusting your online consumer shopping experience and marketing campaigns for Christmas 2023. Understanding the attitudes of consumers and your target market will allow you to improve sales conversions as well as craft compelling Christmas content to give you better results.

Our recommendations in light of the statistics are:

  • To target those with the largest average budget to spend (on gifts, food, celebrations, and decorating), focus on the US or the UK.
  • For the largest number of online shoppers during the festive season, focus on Germany and the US.
  • Make sure to offer gift cards in your dropshipping store.
  • Have multiple payment methods (including PayPal, Apple Wallet, and major credit cards) to see fewer abandoned online baskets.

Good luck with your Christmas ecommerce sales!

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