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Sep 21, 2017
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Festive shopping expected to start as early as October, according to new report

Published
Sep 21, 2017

Retailers know that the two last months of the year will be their busiest, but a new report has revealed that shoppers are starting to look for festive outfits as early as October.


House of Fraser


According to eBay’s Christmas Tracker, which maps shopping patterns, fashion is the retail category with the longest and earliest “window of influence”, which means clothing retailers need to get ready to make the most of the season.

While the peak week for fashion retailers fell in the first week of November last year, Ebay expects shopping to peak this year as early as the start of October, running right through until mid-December. 

“Christmas jumper” was the most commonly searched item in the Clothes, Shoes & Accessories category in the run up to Christmas last year, with over 450,000 searches registered during December. In the women’s fashion category, dresses and boots were amongst the top searched for items as shoppers looked to complete their party season outfit.


Ebay'sChristmas Tracker shows the "window of influece" of each retail category, defined as the period during which searches rise and remain at elevated levels in the run up to Christmas


During the second weekend of December last year, the number of male shoppers searching for handbags rose by 29%; and the number of females searching for cufflinks rose by 31%. Searches for necklaces also increased by 22% that same weekend.

Lorna Dunne, Head of Fashion Sales at eBay UK, commented, “Most fashion retailers know, and have come to expect, that the last few months of the year will be their busiest. However, consumers are faced with an almost infinite choice of goods – whether for themselves or to buy as a gift – meaning sellers have never had to work so hard to stand out from the crowd.”

“Our data shows that shoppers are thinking about Christmas before they’ve even had the chance to show off their Halloween outfits, but that interest remains high right up until the final few weeks before the festivities. Sellers need to plan carefully for the final quarter of the year, understanding what shoppers are looking to buy, when, and weighting inventory accordingly. Having the right inventory in place to deal with the spikes in demand will avoid potential customers turning away at the most crucial time of the year.”
 

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