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Christmas shoppers set to spend £24.3bn online in 2016, peaking on Black Friday

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Black Friday will be the biggest single online shopping day in the UK in the run up to Christmas – a period in which consumers will this year spend £24.3bn online, forecasts new research.

That total is 10% ahead of the £21.8bn spent last year according to the latest Adobe Digital Insights (ADI) study, which forecasts that online revenues on Black Friday alone are set to reach £901m this year, thanks to a move towards aggressive sales promotions as well as the nearness of the date to the final pay day before Christmas.

The study, which analyses past shopping data across 13 countries, finds mobile has become increasingly important over the last three years. Some 20% of online Christmas shopping is expected to take place via m-commerce this year. Meanwhile, it also forecasts that mobile shopping will peak on Christmas Day, which is expected to account for 58% more mobile revenue than Cyber Monday and 34% more than Black Friday.

Other findings include the insight that UK retailers see higher rates of international traffic – one in five (19.7%) of visitors to British ecommerce sites in the run up to Christmas are from outside the UK, whereas European retail websites see nine out of 10 visitors from their own country during holiday season. UK shoppers buy online in search of lower prices, although price sensitivity has fallen by 11% since 2015.

When it comes to grabbing consumer attention around shopping deals, marketers can continue to expect search advertising to be UK shoppers’ most likely source for bargains, with 27% ranking it as their top source for price deals and bargains during the holiday season. Email, however, remains an important source of information, ranking second in the UK at 23%, and first in the US.

John Watton, EMEA marketing director at Adobe, said: “In just three short years, Black Friday has radically reshaped consumer spending over the Christmas period in the UK. The challenge for brands is further exacerbated by the rapid growth in mobile browsing and spending, with more time-pressed Brits turning to online shopping to avoid traffic and queues. It’s more important than ever that retailers deliver consistent, easy and compelling experiences on every single device that a customer uses in order to avoid missing out on their share of the growing online spend. Consumers are more spoilt for choice and well-informed than ever, and they’ll quickly go elsewhere if they’re not getting the experience they want.”

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