Cyber Monday: 53% of people tipped to shop today but retailers have lost their nerve, says e-commerce expert


New research from retail finance specialist Pay4Later reveals 53% of people expect to do some of their Christmas shopping on Cyber Monday, which is set to be the busiest day of the year for online shopping in the UK.

But, by relying on a discount day (or week) without implementing a longer term strategy, retailers risk making the headliners for the wrong reasons in the new year, claims Dan Wagner, CEO and founder of Powa Technologies.

Pay4Later’s findings show that more than 24.9m people intend to shop online today, building on the momentum of Black Friday.

Pay4Later’s research shows older shoppers are joining in as well – 43% of over-65s intend to do some of their Christmas shopping today. However younger shoppers are most likely to buy online tomorrow with 61% of 18 to 24-year-olds hunting bargains.

The study shows that 30% of people will do 10% or more of their Christmas shopping on Cyber Monday, and around 940,000 shoppers plan to do 50% or more of their festive buying then.

Pay4Later a UK provider of point of sale credit, enables retailers to offer finance solutions including interest-free credit to customers and carried out the research to find out what finance services shoppers value from store groups.

Around 33% of medium-sized retailers interviewed by Pay4Later expect 10% or more of their sales this festive season to be made through the credit they offer customers. Some 15% of retailers anticipates over a fifth of their sales will be financed this way.

Scott Law, CEO of Pay4Later, said: “The retail sector is receiving a real boost from the combination of Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the same weekend. Online retailers however need to be able to offer credit as well as discounts in order to maximise sales and to enable customers to borrow responsibly.”

However, Powa’s Wagner, questioned the ability of large-scale discount days, like Cyber Monday and Black Friday, to reverse the faltering performance of the retail sector.

“Retailers are under more pressure than ever to deliver results, having watched major high street stalwarts like HMV, Jessops and Blockbusters go the wall earlier this year after poor Christmas trading, they are determined not to join the ever growing number of bankruptcies on the high street,” he said.

“Retailers have lost their nerve and cut prices much earlier in the season than previous years to claw back the 80% of revenues they traditionally rely on getting in these final weeks of the year. Consumers have lost the appetite to pay more than they need to for goods, and empowered by their smart phones and tablets they are checking prices as they shop. With online retailers promising same day deliveries, the winners are those who can fulfil a shopper’s desire as soon as they see the item at the right price.”