It goes without saying that the best thing about Christmas 2020 won’t be the copious amounts of cheese and wine, the time spent with loved ones, nor the priceless look on children’s faces as they exclaim, “He’s been, he’s been!”

No, instead it will of course be the heavenly break we all so deserve from the sound of Microsoft Teams notifications and Zoom call alerts. Ahh. Bliss.

It seems that Pinterest’s users couldn’t wait for Christmas to roll around this year, either; way back in April, Christmas-related searches on the site were 77% higher YoY, while British retailer John Lewis opened their online Christmas store in August this year, as searches for festive products were up a huge 370%.

Pinterest search stats
I mean we all love Christmas, but seriously, April?

 

Despite the fact that most people have had literally nothing better to do than Christmas shopping in the latter half of this year, procrastinators are still abound this festive season.

Major retailers in America tried to warn people to get their stockings filled nice and early this year to avoid delays, but CNBC reports that more than 150 million shoppers were planning on shopping on the Saturday before Christmas.

And while there has been an increase in the number of bargain hunters this year, 26% of consumers are actually planning on spending more this Christmas.

Klarna’s new social shopping app (which we touched on back in Espresso Volume #6) has played a big role in helping consumers to buy this year: launched in August, their new followable wish list feature has seen more than four million items added.

Klarna report that the number of transactions in their app tripled in November this year compared to the same month YoY.

Of course, many have still been somewhat tentative about hitting the shops in real life, seeing some brands innovate in the virtual world.

Cosmetics brand Charlotte Tilbury this year launched their virtual consultations service, while Jo Malone recently launched a very festive Virtual Townhouse experience online.

Meanwhile Bicester Village – the UK’s second most popular tourist destination after Buckingham Palace – also launched a virtual shopping offer, whereby shoppers across the globe could browse their favourite boutiques via video call.

Interestingly though, while shopping online has boomed, consumers are also looking for local options too: Retail Week report this month that searches for ‘Support Local Businesses’ have grown globally by more than 2,000x year on year.

 

“Searches for ‘Available Near Me’ have grown globally by over 100% since 2019.”

Alison Lomax, Google

 

Though few and far between, some brands still took the plunge and invested in physical retail experiences for shoppers this year, despite the risk of lockdowns spoiling the fun.

LEGO created a real-life version of their Christmas campaign in Covent Garden, allowing customers to immerse themselves in their ‘A Really Cool World’ installation, which consumers could still take part in online.

Selfridges also gave customers the chance to book one-to-one shopping appointments with the aptly named ‘Elfridges’ service, while also throwing a Christmas movie marathon at their new Selfridges Cinema.

 

elfridges
The Elfridges personal shopping service at London department store Selfridges.

 

Finally, from all of us here at Green Room, wherever you are in the world, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Despite the strange circumstances, we’ve been fortunate enough to do some amazing work with our clients this year and can’t wait to work with even more of you in 2021 and beyond.

 

Swift segue now into our latest report: Five New Consumer Shifts That Will Last Beyond 2021, which is available for download here. The piece highlights some the behavioural shifts from this year that present big opportunities for brands to create stronger emotional bonds with their audience.

trends report

Subscribe to our newsletter