The busiest online shopping hour of the year so far was between 13:00 and 14:00 on Monday December 7 as retailers started heavily discounting and consumers looked to scoop a Christmas bargain during their lunch break, payments processor Retail Decisions (ReD) has revealed.
British consumers spent a total of £33 million online during the Monday lunch hour and £1.4 million was spent at 13:43 alone, making it the busiest online shopping minute ever.
Meanwhile online retail trade association IMRG predicts that £350m will have been spent online yesterday, up 16% on a year ago, and that December will see total sales hitting £5bn, an increase of 14% on last year.
"Online retailers are luring consumers with cash back offers, discounts and special deals on the most popular products," says Carl Clump, ReD's CEO. "The Nintendo Wii Black topped the shopping charts today, with the Wii Fit Plus and Balance Board, the Samsung LCD TV and the Toshiba Satellite laptop L450D following closely behind."
"With more and more consumers taking advantage of the convenience and price savings available online, it is no surprise that today sees the highest sales ever online in a single day," adds David Smith, director of operations at IMRG. "As shoppers go online to bag the Christmas bargains our latest research discovered that nearly three quarters of internet shoppers would be doing half or more of their total Christmas shopping online. If consumers continue to spend at this level we will exceed our December forecast of £5bn".