‘Great news’ for industry: Christmas beauty spend to stick in 2020, finds survey

By Kacey Culliney contact

- Last updated on GMT

A global survey suggests 87% of consumers plan to shop this Christmas despite more than 40% citing a decrease in household income due to COVID-19 (Getty Images)
A global survey suggests 87% of consumers plan to shop this Christmas despite more than 40% citing a decrease in household income due to COVID-19 (Getty Images)

Related tags: Christmas, Holiday season, e-commerce, discount, Black friday, COVID-19, Consumer trends

After a difficult start to the year with COVID-19, the beauty and personal care category is set to see sales soar as usual during the Christmas holiday season with consumers maintaining spend and shopping online, according to marketing firm Rakuten Advertising.

The international marketing specialist Rakuten Advertising conducted a global survey with just over 8,500 adults in June 2020 as part of its Road to Recovery: 2020 Shopping PeaksReimagined ​report analysing shopping trends in a post-COVID world.

Majority of consumers still set to Christmas shop

So far this year, the beauty and personal care industry had reported a mixed impact amid the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis​, though many brands had struggled to maintain sales. So, as industry approached one of its most important holiday seasons, what might the end of 2020 look like?

Findings from Rakuten Advertising’s survey indicated the global crisis was not set to negatively impact Christmas shopping plans for most consumers, with 87% planning to shop despite more than 40% citing a decrease in household income due to COVID-19. And 57% of these consumers planned to shop during key peaks like Black Friday.

“This lack of intent to curb spending during peak shopping periods is good news for brands and retailers, presenting an opportunity to drive revenue success in the second half of the year, after a challenging start to 2020,”​ said Rakuten Advertising.

Beauty shifts? Online spending set to rise

But what does this mean for the beauty and personal care industry?

Abi Jacks, VP of international marketing at Rakuten Advertising, said findings suggested that 41% of global consumers had not changed their spend on beauty and personal care since COVID-19 and 20% had even increased spend which was “great news”​ for industry.

“Though 2020 has seen many changes, for brands the good news is that not everything is changing when it comes to how consumers shop during peak shopping days. Brands don’t have to reinvent the wheel. In 2020, optimisations to campaigns and understanding the platforms, marketplaces and publisher types consumers respond to will be key for driving success,”​ Jacks told CosmeticsDesign-Europe.

The global COVID-19 crisis had largely shifted consumer preferences for shopping “further online”,​ she said, with many consumers shopping via e-commerce for the first time.

“These new-to-online consumers present huge opportunities for brands to engage,” ​she said.

A spotlight on the UK, France and Germany – online, discounts and rewards

Jacks said survey findings – which included 1,105 respondents from the UK – showed 19% of consumers in this market would increase spend in beauty and personal care over Christmas, with many kickstarting their shopping in November.

And UK beauty consumers would also be particularly motivated by sales and discounts this year, with 32% of all UK shoppers planning to change when they shopped to save more money, according to the survey.

The “most motivating”​ messages to drive online purchases in the UK would be ‘free shipping’ and ‘discount offers’, she said, “and these approaches should not be neglected in the lead up to holiday season.”

Beauty brands could, for example, partner with affiliate publishers who rewarded consumers for purchasing items – helping to incentivise these price conscious shoppers, she said.

In Germany, 22% of consumers would be influenced by deals like buy-one-get-one-free and 51% of them intend to shop within Europe. In France, 55% wanted to increase spend with local businesses to support them during shopping season and 57% would split Christmas shopping between online and in store this year.

Jacks said knowing where consumers planned to shop for the Christmas period was important. In the UK, for example, 73% planned to shop primarily online with 48% using online marketplaces as “inspiration for holiday shopping”.

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