More than half of Christmas spend will go to groceries: Accenture

Australians will spend more than half of their Christmas cash on groceries, new research from Accenture finds. 

According to the report, while Australians will spend an average of $686 each during this holiday period, an average of $351 will be spent on decking out Christmas lunch and dinner – much of this on more ‘high-end’ brands, rather than private labels. 

“It’s about consumers focusing on products that will make for an abundant Christmas,” Michelle Grujin, retail lead at Accenture, told Inside Retail

More consumers are likely to shop in-store for their grocery items, preferring to hand-pick fresh food items, and as well as touch and assess the products. However, more competitive prices and better offers and deals would entice almost half of respondents to shift their spend online. 

“It’s also about what people are feeling in terms of certainty and optimism with their financial situation coming into the Christmas period.”

Only 23 per cent of consumers are optimistic about their finances coming into the Christmas period, with key factors including the cost of groceries (35 per cent), disposable income (31 per cent), and utility costs (25 per cent). This could be why more consumers are looking to grocery as an alternative means of enhancing their holiday season. 

Where else are they shopping?

The remaining spending money is likely to go to ‘retailers with purpose’, Grujin said, with consumers increasingly showing their preference for brands that align with their own values. 

In fact, almost half (44 per cent) of survey respondents said are more likely to shop with an environmentally conscious retailer, while 43 per cent said they would shop with a brand that reflects their own beliefs.

“As we move into Christmas and beyond, the retailers with purpose are the ones that are going to connect with customers,” Grujin said. 

“What’s becoming more of a focus is how people are using their sense of social consciousness and responsible retailing. Consumers want to be engaging with a brand that is far more aligned with this sense of social value.”

Over half of consumers (58 per cent) believe retailers are on the right path – and are making positive steps toward being more environmentally conscious with product and service offerings. 

According to Accenture, gift cards for stores or restaurants will be the gift of choice this year, with 56 per cent of consumers likely to buy this as a present. Clothing and footwear (48 per cent) and toys (42 per cent) were the next most popular gift options. 

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