NIXSolutions: Google Identified Consumer Behavioral Trends in the Pre-New Year Season

Google and Ipsos conducted a study on New Year’s Eve shopping and studied consumer behavior in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The study reflects behavioral trends that will help brands successfully meet the 2021 New Year shopping season.

Brief conclusions:

  • 21% of consumers start shopping for the New Year in June;
  • More than half of those surveyed seek to support small businesses by shopping at local stores;
  • 49% of buyers want accurate information on product availability before purchasing;
  • 46% of consumers prefer to wait for the onset of the sales season.


The sooner the better

In recent years, the New Year’s shopping season has started earlier. According to SEOnews, 37% of consumers in the EMEA region indicated that they plan to start holiday shopping earlier in 2021 than in 2020. This is primarily due to the experience of last year, when traditional shopping became a problem because of the pandemic, due to the many quarantine restrictions.

How has the pandemic affected New Year’s shopping?

The pandemic continues to have a profound impact on purchasing behavior and on the life of the world in general. Small businesses are clearly hardest hit by the impact of Covid-19, which is why buyers around the world are trying to support it.

According to a study by Google and Ipsos, 56% of respondents in the EMEA region plan to make more purchases in small local stores this year.

The pandemic is also affecting online store congestion, leading to delays in delivery and stock shortages, especially during the holiday season. This is why shoppers use Google Search to check for product availability in advance. What’s more, 49% said they want confirmation that the item is in stock before making an online purchase.

Deferred demand and sales season

Consumers began to dispose of their budget differently, began to save more, postponing purchases until a better moment, for example, before sales. This is confirmed by data from Eurostat, according to which there is a noticeable increase in savings of European households. What’s more, reports on Google user movements show that traffic to offline stores around the world is gradually returning to pre-pandemic levels. Therefore, in 2021, one should expect a rather violent effect of deferred demand.

Interestingly, 46% of shoppers in the EMEA region plan to postpone gift purchases until sales start.

What is important for retailers to remember on the eve of the New Year holidays?

Buyers already know about possible problems of the pre-New Year season – delivery delays, shortages of goods, new restrictions – therefore, it is critically important for retailers to be in touch with consumers and make the entire buying process as simple, understandable and convenient as possible.

Constantly updating information on the quantity of the remaining product or on the delivery time will help consumers to make their own purchasing decisions, notes NIXSolutions. They will know what to expect and therefore will not be disappointed.