Argos reveals shopper tribes that fuelled soaring lockdown sales

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One year since the first lockdown, Argos has identified three major shopper tribes fuelling orders on its website, snapping up home entertainment, domestic appliances and fitness equipment at record rates.

They are:

The ‘Wine O’Clock Shopper’

The ‘Lunchtime Browser’, and

The ‘Vampire Shopper’

The ‘Wine O’Clock Shopper’ has made 8pm the most popular time of evening on the Argos app and website, with 12m visits in the first six weeks of 2021 alone in that hour. Tired out after work and family obligations, their purchases are geared towards upgrading their home entertainment with the latest large TVs and Fire TV sticks, as well as keeping the kids distracted with videogames, Play-Doh and sand.

As ‘wine o’clock’ comes around and adults relax on the sofa, they appear to have a keen eye on how they can improve their home. Visits to the kitchen and living sections of the Argos website have almost doubled over the past year, with cooking mixers, microwaves and curtain poles among the bestsellers.

Meanwhile, lunchtime has seen website visits explode in both duration and number since lockdown began.

With office workers out of sight from their bosses as they work from home, visits to the website from 11am-2pm doubled between 2019 and 2020. Rather than peaking over the space of one hour, lunchtime browsing is now a longer affair, and shoppers are picking up their everyday essentials and upgrading their home offices.

This February, as temperatures across the UK dived below zero, workers snapped up heaters, replaced their missing AirPods and kitted out their desks with printers and shredders.

Argos sales statistics on the ‘lunchtime browser’ suggested that many such shoppers are parents looking to distract their children as they try to get on with their job. In a sign that ‘pester power’ is especially effective when mum and dad need to get things done, Super Mario 3D World and Mario Kart 8 on the Nintendo Switch were both top sellers in the lunchtime window.

‘Vampire Shoppers’ haunting the Argos website in the middle of the night are also turning up in greater numbers than before. There were 46m visits to Argos.co.uk between 1am and 5am last year, with traffic peaking between 1 and 2am.

The dead of night is a popular time for purchases of pillows and duvets as people become annoyed at being unable to sleep, while customers also use the witching hour to reflect on life and contemplate getting fit, with purchases of dumbbells, benches and weights over-indexing versus other times of day. The most popular purchases of all, however, are videogames, with late-night gamers propelling huge sales of headsets, controllers, consoles and tentpole titles such as The Last of Us Part 2.

An Argos spokesperson said: “One year on from lockdown, the way we’ve been shopping has understandably changed: as we spend more time in our homes, we see something we need, whether that’s games to keep the kids entertained or a crystal-clear TV to watch the latest box-sets on, and we immediately purchase it. Argos’s vast range, and the fact we offer Fast Track delivery that sees items arrive at your door within four hours, mean we’ve been a popular choice for lockdown shoppers whatever time they choose to browse.”