Visa forecasts £450 million UK card spend on 2 December

Source: Visa Europe

The nation's ongoing love affair with online shopping will deepen on Monday 2nd December 2013 when it is predicted that online transactions will top 7.7 million, up 16% on 2012, making it the busiest day of the year for ecommerce, according to Visa Europe.

It is predicted that a whopping £450 million will be spent in one day on Visa cards, which equates to £312,500 being spent per minute or £5,208 per second online. As shoppers trawl the internet ahead of Christmas, John Lewis predicts that iPads, cashmere and Uggs will be the most sought after products as John Lewis prepares to receive more than 80,000 orders which will be processed each day at its 650,000 sq ft distribution centre in Milton Keynes.

UK consumers’ shopping habits have changed significantly in recent years: more than 25% of all spend with Visa is now online and more and more consumers are using their mobile devices to search and purchase whilst on the go. IMRG, the UK’s industry association for online retail, today reveals that mobile now accounts for 27% of online spend - a rise of 2,000% since the start of 2010. Indeed with the proliferation of mobile technology, consumers’ spending habits are indicating that this year may well be the last ‘Mega Monday’ with John Lewis expecting to see traffic on its website reach its annual peak on the evening of Sunday 1st December. The slots between 20.00 and 21.00 on both Sunday and Monday are expected to be the busiest periods by both Visa Europe and John Lewis.

Analysis of Visa Europe’s data shows that the busiest online shopping day historically falls on the Monday closest to the beginning of December.  A combination of pay day for the majority of consumers falling on the last Friday of the month and a weekend spent browsing the shops, results in shoppers logging on to buy their gifts online on the subsequent Monday. All of these factors will result in consumers increasing their online transactions by 16% on last year according to Visa Europe.

Jeremy Nicholds, Director of Commercial Development at Visa Europe, said: “UK consumers’ love affair with online shopping will reach its peak on Mega Monday when we predict that we will process 7.7 million Visa transactions – a 16% rise on last year. Online shopping now accounts for more than 25% of spend with Visa in the UK, signifying the confidence that consumers have in the security of online payments and in the delivery of goods. With an average of £312,500 expected to be spent online every minute on 2nd December, the Christmas shopping season will certainly start with a bang!”

Mark Lewis, online director at John Lewis said: “Our customers’ shopping habits have changed over the past few years, and our peak time for browsing and shopping on is now Sunday evening. With shoppers becoming more comfortable when purchasing via mobiles and tablets, coupled with better connectivity and the rise of smartphones so people can browse online through the day, it’s not surprising the way we shop has changed.”

Andrew McClelland, Chief Operations & Policy Officer at IMRG said: “A big increase in sales through mobile devices has been a major factor in driving our Index to a stronger-than-expected performance in 2013; earlier this year we revised our forecast for 2013 up from 12% to 15%. The percentage of online sales completed through mobile devices has risen from 0.4% at the start of 2010 to 27% in Q3 2013, and we anticipate that this growth will continue if the new range of budget tablets sell well this Christmas.”

Visa bases its prediction on up to the minute spending data and previous years’ Christmas spending trends.  Over £1 in every £3 in the UK is spent on a Visa card, making this data one of the most reliable indicators of trends in consumer spending. 

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