A SHEFFIELD retail expert has hailed the power of the internet for Christmas shopping
Hundreds of warehouse workers in Doncaster have been processing millions of pounds’ worth of Christmas presents in recent weeks.
The Doncaster-based Amazon depot is faces its busiest time of year as Christmas draws ever nearer.
On one day alone – Cyber Monday, December 3 – the internet-based firm sold more than three million items.
But according to Sheffield Hallam University marketing lecturer Anne Lindley-French, this is not a one off .
She said: “Internet transactions have gone up 32 per cent from last year. That’s bonkers exponential growth.
“People thought the high street would be no more, but that isn’t the case.
“The companies with the biggest gross are the ones that are multi-channel retail outlets, where you can click and buy and then collect your goods from the store.”
And Sheffielders are savvy internet shoppers – new research by price comparison site Pricespy.co.uk shows 49 per cent of the city’s shoppers will do most of their Christmas shopping online.
“What’s brilliant now,” says Anne, “is we trust the internet.”
“However, it is much more difficult to buy online if you are in financial hardship, you can only buy online really if you are credit-worthy.
“What we may see in the future is that buying online becomes easier.”
And Anne predicts our buying habits will keep changing, with phones becoming payment devices.
“It’s hard to keep up with it, especially if you are writing a text book on the subject,” she says. “By the time the text book would have been published people’s habits would have changed.”
“There are some stores like the Aurora stores - which includes Oasis, Coast and River Island - where can use your phone in store to make an order and in certain town and cities have it delivered within the hour, now that is amazing.”