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Up to £3.5bn worth of Christmas purchases will be influenced by smartphones this year, with up to 10% of all in-store purchases also impacted by such devices, according to research.

A study from business consultancy Deloitte found that £3.5bn of retail sales this Christmas will be purchased on or influenced by smartphones with overall online sales up 17% since last year.

The study released today also found that the influence of smartphones by far outweighs the value of direct sales made through them.

“We anticipate around £3.2bn of in-store Christmas sales will be influenced by smartphones, with another £330m of sales made directly through the devices,” read the study.

Meanwhile, a further £500m in sales will be made through tablets during the forecast period, according to Deloitte.

Colin Jeffrey, Deloitte head of multichannel retail, also predicted that “click-and-collect” services would play a strong role in the £3.5bn mobile spend forecast.

“Those retailers who have invested in this service are in line to do well as these customers spend more and collections drive footfall in to stores,” he said. 

“Retailers without flexible collection options and mobile services are failing to meet basic customer expectations and will suffer as a result.” 

Ian Geddes, Deloitte’s head of retail, UK, said, “It is not certain whether this will translate into higher spending, with consumers continuing to show a desire to save, we believe it will be enough to generate modest growth. 

“However, while we forecast the value of retail sales to be in positive territory, once you account for inflation running at 2.5%, this equates to a fall in volume.” 

Gedden further advised retailers to employ better use of strategic, targeted sale activity as opposed to “blanket application of discounts across stores seen in recent years” to maximise consumer spend.


Published 26 November, 2012 by NMA Staff

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