Christmas 2012 smashed all previous ecommerce records in the UK, according to a new report.

Boxing Day in particular saw a huge number of punters flock to a variety of online retailers.

The report from Experian Hitwise showed that consumers spent a staggering 14m hours surfing the Web and made a whooping 113m visits to online retail stores – an impressive increase of 17% on last year.

This figure dwarfed the figures of Christmas Eve and Christmas day: in spite of the fact that, when looked at individually, they were impressive in their own right. Around 84m visits were made to retail stores on Christmas Eve, and 107m on Christmas day – up 86% and 71% respectively.

Amazon emerged victorious in the battle of the retailers, triumphing over the likes of eBay to become the most visited shopping site on Christmas day, accounting for around 12% of the total visits made on the day.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the search terms ‘sale’ and ‘sales’ figured heavily, with one in every 125 searches conducted in the UK featuring the phrases. Debenhams, Marks and Spencer and John Lewis, were the top brands in regards to sales searches.

IBM also conducted its own research into Boxing Day retail data, reporting an increase of online sales 44.96% higher than 2011.

The firm also looked into the use of items such as smartphones for conducting retail purchases.

With smartphones or tablets appearing in many people’s stockings over the Christmas period, it is of little surprise that figures for mobile traffic increased this year as well.

In total, almost one-third (30.73%) of visits were made using a smart device, a significant increase on the 19.8% of visits conducted on the devices on Boxing Day 2011.

With figures such as these, firms which failed to capitalise on the abundance of Internet marketing opportunities this year will certainly be more careful when planning their strategies over the next Christmas period.

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