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Retailers Brace Themselves for a Merry Online Christmas

Research carried by Wolfgang Digital on behalf of Virgin Media Business shows that almost 77.8% or 4 in 5 people will do some or all of their shopping online this Christmas, with women more likely to shop online when compared with men.

As part of the research,  over 1,000 Irish consumers were surveyed about their Christmas shopping habits in the run up to the festive season.

When asked what factors have caused them to give up on an online purchase, 37% of participants said that a slow website has caused them to give up on buying something, while 28% of participants said that they gave up purchasing something online because the site wasn’t mobile-friendly.

According to Aidan D’Arcy, Head of Business at Virgin Media: “What we’re seeing is that almost 80% of Irish consumers plan to do some or all of their shopping online, which poses a unique opportunity for Irish retailers to capture a large proportion of the Christmas shopping market.”

“It also poses a threat at the same time as they face missing a large share of the Christmas shopping market if their websites are not up to speed with almost 40% of consumers referencing website speed as a factor for giving up on an online purchase. It is therefore vital for Irish ecommerce businesses to ensure their broadband speeds are sufficient to deal with the ever-increasing presence of online shopping, especially at Christmas when 4 in 5 people plan to do some part or all of their shopping online,” he says.

Some of the other key findings of the research include:

  • 53.8% of participants felt that giving someone a gift voucher for Christmas may come across as impersonal, but at the same time, 55% of people still planned on buying someone a voucher for Christmas.
  • 30% of participants said price was the main factor when shopping online, with 17% referencing free delivery as the deciding factor. Only 8% of consumers based their decision on word of mouth.
  • When it comes to what people want for Christmas, money came out the top of peoples’ wish lists while clothes and phones also featured prominently.


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