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eBay: Brands should be preparing for two Christmases this year

With just 100 days to Christmas, this year’s festive season could mean that brands have to prepare for two distinctly different approaches to shopping ahead of the ‘most wonderful time of the year’.

Research from eBay Ads UK has revealed that, as a result of the impact that the pandemic has had on people’s finances, consumer mindsets are different across the board this year. The survey of 2,000 Brits found that 26% of people have less disposable income compared to before the pandemic, with 19% having more at their disposal and 55% having the same amount.

“It’s unsurprising that the last 18 months of economic uncertainty has impacted Brits’ finances in extreme ways. Whilst some were lucky enough to stay employed and grow their savings, unfortunately millions became furloughed or redundant – and understandably may have different priorities this festive season,” said Harmony Murphy, GM Advertising UK at eBay.

Of those with more money to play with, half are planning to spend more gifts and celebrations this year versus last year, while 19% of them are planning to treat their loved ones to more extravagant gifts with the extra disposable income.

On the other hand, consumers who have reported having less money available are preparing for a more financially conscious Christmas. 40% say they would prefer a smaller, quieter Christmas, with 67% feeling their biggest priority will be finding gifts that are good value for money. This is a contrast to the 49% of those with more disposable income seeking the same value. Another top priority (58%) for those with less to spend is spending time with loved ones, rather than material goods.

“With 100 days to go until Christmas, brands have an enormous opportunity to engage with excited consumers – however, it’s vital that they take into consideration the vastly different experiences people have lived over the course of the pandemic,” said Murphy. “Brands need to be mindful of consumers’ varying priorities and mindsets, and carefully tailor messaging and targeting accordingly. This is crucial to demonstrating you really care for your customers this Christmas time.”