Over a third of Brits will do this year’s Christmas shopping online

• New survey reveals in-store and online shopping are neck-and-neck on the countdown to Christmas 2015
• Brits shop in-store for the hands-on experience, while online shopping is praised for convenience and price comparison options
• Almost a quarter of men in the UK admit they’ll be delegating Christmas shopping duties to their significant other

Over a third of Brits will be doing their Christmas shopping online – meaning this retail platform is hot on the heels of the traditional shopping experience.

A survey into Christmas spending habits has revealed that online shopping is now on the brink of being Britain’s favourite way to shop during the festive season.

10,000 people across the UK were asked how they’ll be doing the majority of this year’s Christmas shop, and what they loved most about shopping in-store and online – with Brits sharing the reasons they prefer each of the two retail platforms.

Earlier this month, Marketing Magazine revealed that two thirds of British Christmas shoppers find the best bargains by finding products in-store and shopping for better prices online – highlighting the unique benefits offered by each channel.

This new study, conducted by online marketing agency www.wearemeta.co.uk, saw UK shoppers praise the opportunity to get hands-on with products in-store – while the convenience of e-commerce sites is making online shopping an increasingly popular option.

Other once-popular shopping alternatives appear to be on their way out – with less than 2% of Brits intending to use catalogues, TV or telephone for their Christmas shopping in 2015.

Retail unwrapped
This Christmas, it looks like Brits are finding most of their stocking fillers in-store – with 38% of participants planning to do the majority of their seasonal shop in brick-and-mortar stores rather than online.

When it comes to the advantages of shopping in-store, Brits believe it’s the hands-on aspect that makes the difference – along with the easy returns policy and human touch of customer service.

18% of men surveyed were drawn to the instant gratification found with in-store shopping, while 24% of British women like having the opportunity to ask for help.

The Christmas shopping cart
One resounding outcome of the survey saw online shopping edge ever closer to the in-store experience, bringing in a hefty 37% of the overall vote thanks to the unmatched convenience of the online platform.

Last year, Capgemini reported that online retail in the UK had, in 2014, surpassed £100bn for the first time – with 13% growth during the Christmas period versus the previous year.

And it looks like the online retail revolution is taking Britain by storm, with over half of 35-44 year-olds – and a substantial 33% of over-65s – planning to buy most of this year’s Christmas presents online.

In spite of being home to Britain’s biggest and best high street shopping experience, 39% of London’s residents are also turning to e-commerce for their Christmas shop – and 17% of Londoners say pricing is the reason they choose to Google their Christmas gift ideas.

Santa’s little helper
According to the study, Christmas shopping isn’t everyone’s idea of a yuletide treat – with 20% of Brits admitting they’ll be delegating this duty to their other half.

Almost a quarter of British men revealed their partner will be taking control of the Christmas shop – and over 40% of Yorkshire’s male population are planning to outsource shopping to their significant other this season.

With catalogue, TV and telephone shopping bringing in combined support of just 4%, Christmas 2015 looks like a two-horse retail race – with the in-store experience giving way to online shopping, as silver surfers embrace the advantages of logging on.

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