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Cost of living pressure will see shoppers spend less on toys, clothing and home décor this festive season 


Forget the weeks before Christmas being big for retailers – this year, Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales are set to out-strip Christmas for spending, a new study from Honeycomb Strategy has revealed.


The leading specialist research agency today released the findings from its Black Friday and Christmas shopping spending research, which questioned Aussies about their proposed spending habits in the all-important spending lead-up to the festive season.


The data revealed Black Friday has become a pivotal moment in the Australian retail calendar, with 65% of Aussies planning to shop the Black Friday sales on November 24. More than one in four (27%) said they would proactively seek out deals for Black Friday ahead of time, while one in 10 are signed up to Black Friday newsletters in anticipation of savings.


According to the research, nearly half of Australians plan to use Black Friday or Cyber Monday (November 27) deals for Christmas shopping, with more than half saying they’d be buying gifts for loved ones in the sales. Of those doing their Christmas shopping during Black Friday, nearly half (45%) said they’d use the mega sale to do all their festive gift buying.


In a sign of the ongoing cost-of-living crisis plaguing the nation, Aussies are set to cut back on spending this Christmas, with one in four (23%) saying they’re planning to spend less on gifts this year. Nearly all shoppers who are planning on cutting back attributed spiralling living costs to their decision to reduce their spending.


In bad news for toy stockists, one in five Aussies (20%) said they were planning on spending less on toys this year, while clothing, electronics, good and gourmet treats, home décor and furnishings are also set to take a hit, with very few planning to spend more on products for their home.


Additionally, only 38% of people said they planned to buy Christmas decorations this year; amongst them, nearly half (42%) said they planned to spend less on their Christmas décor, compared to last year.


Bricks-and-mortar shopping is still set to have its place in 2023, with more than half of Aussies (54%) saying they still enjoy the experience of visiting physical stores to shop, particularly in December.


Gift vouchers are also set to have a resurgence in 2023, with Aussies forecasting to buy more gift cards than ever this festive season.

Christmas Gifting Research Data 2023 (1).jpg

Honeycomb Strategy Managing Director, John Bevitt, said the research shows retailers and brands can’t underestimate the increasing power of Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales in bringing in dollars.


“Traditionally, Black Friday and Cyber Monday were perceived as more US-based shopping events, where ecommerce has really dominated for many years,” he said.


“Now, Australian shoppers are taking advantage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, and other events such as Click Frenzy in late October,  particularly as more and more brands and retailers offer special deals across the sales weekend. Retailers and brands have already jumped the gun, with early sales deals and discounts and VIP specials to entice shoppers to spend well ahead of Christmas.


“This takes on even more potency in 2023 as the cost-of-living crisis continues. Many more Australian shoppers this year will be looking to save money where they can, especially in the lead-up to Christmas, and this is where the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales can swoop in.  However, a powerful benefit for retailers is that the majority of Australians still like to visit physical stores, so getting the Christmas shopping experience and pricing on point well ahead of the season has become critical for sales."

Nationally representative sample of n=501 Australians. November 2023.

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