Consumers in both the US and UK are preparing for a Christmas in lockdown, new retail data shows
Mountain View, CA and London – Consumers in both the US and the UK are already preparing for a long second lockdown and buying products in preparation for Christmas in isolation, according to new Commerce Pulse data from eCommerce experience specialist Bloomreach. The data reveals that ‘indoor Christmas’ and ‘Christmas at home’ were popular search terms in October, showing that shoppers were already preparing for the eventuality of a second lockdown as early as August 2020.
The prospect of a Christmas in lockdown is providing a boon for home-focused eCommerce segments:
The home furnishing and home improvement categories have both seen a surge in conversion compared to the same period in 2019 (+70% and +103% respectively);
However, the apparel category’s slight surge (+0.7%) was driven primarily by comfy clothes, including joggers, pajamas, leggings and hoodies.
Brian Walker, CSO of Bloomreach, said: “This year continues to prove challenging for retailers: a second lockdown resulting in ‘non-essential’ shops closing again will have a drastic impact on the revenue of the industry, particularly in the midst of the most important shopping season of the year. Consumers are turning to eCommerce as a way to shop for everything from essentials to gifts this holiday season.”
During the first lockdown, we saw a surge in online orders to compensate for the lack of access to brick-and-mortar stores. This surge was especially felt as consumers shopped for essential products like groceries and cleaning products online, many for the first time.
However as the pandemic wore on and consumers have increasingly worked, studied, cooked, and exercised from home, segments such as kitchen, garden, and home naturally saw a surge in demand and sales. It’s therefore no wonder Brits and Americans have been more inclined to invest in their homes, rather than party wear.
And now as we enter the holiday season, eCommerce and digital experience will again be at the forefront. Bloomreach anticipates eCommerce will increase 36-38% year over year as consumers turn to online channels to do their holiday shopping - and even earlier than in previous years. This puts the emphasis more than ever on the need for outstanding customer experiences online as consumers look for comfort and ease of access for products in the run up to Christmas. The next few weeks will be deal breakers for retailers: those who offer high quality experiences this side of Christmas will start the year on a high, while we can expect the others to continue to struggle in the new year.”
Bloomreach is the leader in commerce experience™. It's flagship product, brX, is the only digital experience platform built specifically for brands, retailers and B2B companies who want to grow their revenue online while delivering each of their customers a premium, personalized commerce experience. brX combines content management capabilities with market-leading commerce-specific, AI-driven search, merchandising and personalization in one flexible, API-first next generation platform. Bloomreach serves over 300 companies globally including Neiman Marcus, Bosch, Puma, FC Bayern Munchen and Marks & Spencer. Bloomreach has a global network of certified partners and market-leading commerce platforms. For more information, visit Bloomreach.com or follow us on Twitter @Bloomreach_tm.