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Christmas adverts help kick off the online shopping season

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These days, the starting bell for peak season appears to come not with Black Friday or Cyber Monday, but with the Christmas advert. John Lewis, Argos and others launched theirs last week – and already millions of viewers have tuned in. That effect seems to have a pretty direct effect on retail sales: John Lewis says the top search term on its website since the launch of Monty’s Christmas last week (16m views and counting) is now ‘Monty’. In today’s InternetRetailing newsletter, we report on how retailers are harnessing social media

Throughout this busiest season of the retail year, we’ll be running stories about the Christmas effect on retail: today we also report on plans by smaller retailers to start their Christmas promotions earlier this year. A timely move, it seems, as the large retailers’ adverts get the seasonal spirit going.

Promotions too make sense, since that’s what seems to have been keeping retailers selling this autumn, when the weather has been so much less cold than usual. Today’s BRC figures for October’s online and offline retail sales show that fashion sales grew online when they were flat on the high street thanks to the strategic use of promotions – a habit that some retailers had been hoping to break.

Today we also report on the latest developments in Land Securities’ strategy of developing links between physical space and online shopping as it works to keep footfall rising. This comes at a time when more shoppers are turning online to buy – illustrated by Amazon’s success in increasing its share of UK entertainment sales, as shown in Kantar Worldpanel figures. Finally, we also report on a new website for Twinings.

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