Fairway-logoEarly indications from research into UK online Christmas shopping revenues for 2013 suggest that this year has been a fruitful one thanks to information about key shopping dates around the festive period.

Kenshoo Ltd published a seasonal shopping report this week and have explored the performance of online marketing and the resulting ecommerce sales in the UK during the period leading up to Christmas. Key dates that have been identified include Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Green Monday and Boxing Day. Other dates that online retailers consider relevant also include final posting deadlines for the Royal Mail and courier companies. Equipped with the knowledge that these key dates are when shoppers are most active online, and most likely to make a purchase, retailers have been investing significantly more spend into online marketing activity such as pay-per-click and product listing advertising.

According to Kenshoo, there was a year on year increase in spend for online advertising of 40.6% specifically for Black Friday, a sales phenomenon that was previously only familiar to the US market. With such a frenzy being created by retailers collectively taking the opportunity to market to customers during busy times, customer behaviour is changing too.

It might be fair to say that most customers now expect to get a bargain during the festive period, and are responsive to advertising, as revenues increased this year by up to 40% too thanks to the Black Friday phenomenon. Reports from the UK high streets were that shoppers had been getting impatient, upset and aggressive towards shop workers and fellow shoppers in a race to get the best products at the best price. The same will apply online too, except without the face to face interaction. Retailers must be ready for the Christmas rush in order to enjoy the uplift in revenue, and they must be ready to invest in advertising, ecommerce fulfilment and supply chain solutions to achieve the sales.

Some comments from shoppers on the high street about their online shopping experiences during Christmas time include: “It’s annoying to see a great offer that doesn’t expire for a few days and then when I go to buy it it’s out of stock. You’d think they’d get enough of that product in. It puts me off using that website” “It’s horrible not knowing if something’s going to arrive on time. It’s nice to get and email update and tracking code to find out where the package is” “I will only use a shop with a good reputation. If they’ve got loads of negative reviews about bad service, missing parcels etc I won’t use them. The clever online retailer will plan their stock well in advance and have a robust fulfilment solution ready to send out hundreds, even thousands of orders per month with the minimum of fuss, staffing and paperwork and will rely on a reliable outsourcing solution. Christmas is a fantastic time for any business involved in the ecommerce market and supply chain, providing they are properly prepared.

Bio: Fairway Fulfilment & Logistics is an established and professional fulfilment house in the UK, providing warehousing and fulfilment services for businesses looking to outsource their logistics. Located near Heathrow, UK, if you are looking for ecommerce fulfilment and third party logistics in the UK, visit http://www.fairwaypsd.com/

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