Retail Ireland’s Christmas Monitor 2017 predicts an increase in total sales of over €100 million, with sales over the Christmas season to increase to €4.5 billion from €4.4 billion last year.
Retail Ireland Director Thomas Burke said: “Now that the uncertain political environment of recent days has passed, retailers are looking forward to the approaching Christmas period with renewed optimism. Rising disposable incomes, more people at work, and falling prices will raise consumer spirits and enable greater spending over the busy Christmas period.”
With many people choosing to shop online and to buy from non-Irish websites to avoid the busy shopping centres and get better deals, the challenge for Irish retailers is to ensure that this increased spending is felt locally and Irish retailers benefit from this spending.
Retail Ireland Director Thomas Burke said: “The growing migration by Irish consumers online over recent months is creating a challenge for Irish retailers. Local traders have to date been unable to stem the flow of close to 75% of online consumer spending that currently leaves these shores.”
This increase in consumer spending is a result of an average rise in gross disposable income which was up 5.4 percent in the first half of 2017, an increase of over four percent from last year. Because of this increase, many Irish people are finding that they have more money to spend on clothes, food and drink, presents, decorations and anything else they need for Christmas.
For presents, the Retail Ireland Monitor 2017 predicts that the focus for gifts will be primarily on personalisation, fragrance, champagne, and chocolates. For men, it will be focused on shoes, and for women, the main presents will be luxury accessories and fragrance.
Electronics are always in high demand, especially around Christmas time. Televisions, tablets, phones and video game systems are usually on the majority of children’s Santa lists. Retail Ireland predicts that from Black Friday right up to Christmas Day there will be a big emphasis on these products, with many retailers using discounts and promotions to drive sales.
By Aimee Walsh