Record-breaking Boxing Day caps successful festive period for retail

Retail websites racked up more than 156million visits on Boxing Day, a 20% year-on-year increase, putting the finishing touches to what has proved a record-breaking festive period for retail.

However, for the first time in seven years Boxing Day was not the busiest online retail day of the year, despite such an increase, with the biggest success story of the period being Black Friday. UK shoppers showed they have truly embraced this originally American sales day with an impressive 180million visits to retail websites.

Black Friday, along with Cyber Monday and Manic Monday, experienced a huge increase in popularity this side of the Atlantic and received a huge amount of attention in the press.  Major stories featured in The TelegraphBBC and The Daily Mail among others.

The success of the season has been attributed to brands placing increased emphasis on promotional discounts online and doing a better job of engaging with customers via multiple channels.

You can guarantee that due to the level of their success these dates are now a mainstay of the UK retail calendar and retailers will put even greater emphasis on their marketing in future years to get an even larger slice of the pie.

Christmas 2014

Boxing Day featured a 20% year-on-year increase in traffic

Data from Experian’s Hitwise platform 2014

As the above graph shows, pre-Christmas online activity tailed off from December 15 to December 20 but then picked up from December 21, as sales activity and next day delivery became driving factors.

For further analysis, and for a full comparison between High Street and online activity over the Christmas period, register for Experian’s webinar on Tuesday 20 January http://bit.ly/1C2FbZd. If there’s anything in particular you would like us to cover in that webinar let us know in the comments.

Traffic volume to specific sites or categories of sites is just one example of the depth of analysis possible with Experian’s Hitwise platform. Hitwise empowers users to carry out detailed competitor studies, see where traffic is coming from and where it goes.

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