Hamburg News: Trade and Finance. High-class shopping area in the city centre shown.
Weihnachten / Weihnachtsdekoration Neuer Wall © /Jörg Modrow

Online shops earning profit this Christmas

North German trade expecting sales growth

The average expenditure on Christmas gifts in Hamburg this year is EUR 482 – or EUR 10 above the national mean, according to the Christmas Survey 2018 by FOM University. Young people in particular shop on the internet, while older citizens prefer stationary shops. Some 76 per cent of 12 to 22-year-olds and even 86 per cent of 23 to 37-year-olds will order most gifts online.

Differences in purchasing behaviour

Social media are playing an increasingly important role in purchasing decisions with 46 per cent of 12 to 22-year-olds already finding possible gifts online e.g. on Facebook and Instagram. The younger the buyer, the less time is spent shopping while older people shop for longer. While older people begin planning in October, many younger people buy in the last eight days before the holiday.

Gift vouchers most popular

According to a study by the auditing and consulting firm Ernst & Young, the increase in online trade is also attributable to shifts in gift preferences. This year, for instance, presents such as events and travel witnessed the strongest growth rates nationwide from an average of EUR 19 to EUR 42. Such gifts are purchased predominantly on the internet. “Today, more and more special experiences, visits to events and trips are given away as gifts. Internet shops are clearly ahead in this respect,” said Thomas Harms, Head of Consumer Products & Retail at EY.

Christmas business – highest turnover in retail

Hopes of strong Christmas trade are high among retailers in Schleswig-Holstein, Hamburg and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania this year. The Handelsverband Nord expects sales in November and December to be up 2 per cent over 2017, according to an announcement on November 22, 2018. “The retail trade in the north is expected to exceed a turnover of EUR 8 billion for the first time this Christmas business”, said President Andreas Bartmann. The association has predicted EUR 3.8 billion euros for Schleswig-Holstein, EUR 2.7 billion for Hamburg EUR and EUR 1.6 billion for Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania

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