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Easter increase in online shopping anticipated

28 March 2018 - 09:04 by Graham Miller

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New projections from Springboard suggest that more people will shop online over the course of the Easter weekend so long as the weather remains mild.

Internet Retailing reports that there is some uncertainty around how the market will cope if temperatures plunge again, as they have several times in 2018 so far. But in the best case scenario, the break will prompt spending increases both on the web and at bricks and mortar outlets.

Study spokesperson, Diane Wehrle, said that Easter was usually a catalyst for retail activity, with people using sites that offer shopping online to stock up on gifts and goodies for friends and family alike.

She also pointed out that the ‘Beast from the East’ which hit in late February set the market back somewhat, even in the usually resilient e-commerce sector. This is because deliveries were disrupted and several sites suffered setbacks, meaning that even with more consumers stuck indoors with nothing to do, there was not a spike in online activity.

If all goes to plan then high street outlets could enjoy a 2.4 per cent rise in visitor numbers compared with the same period last year. Solid growth is also anticipated online, with various segments set to experience more spending.

The arrival of spring usually signals the start of a new season of shopping for people who want to spruce up their outdoor areas, with gardening supplies and furniture generating a lot more interest at this time of year. Of course, weather issues can play havoc with demand for products in these categories, which is why analysts are being fairly cautious in issuing predictions about how progress will be made this year.

Retailers rely on events like Easter to get consumers interested in spending cash, even in the age of always-available online outlets.