Small businesses in Wales are taking the stress out of the festive season this year as Christmas shoppers opt for shopping locally to avoid the trolley dash of big retailers, according to new research from TSB.
The study, a OnePoll survey of 2000 people who celebrate Christmas across the UK, found that over half (54%) of Welsh festive shoppers will be ticking items off their Christmas list at their local small businesses this year because they find it much less stressful. So it comes as no surprise that 43% of those surveyed in Wales would also like more small businesses in their local area.
The research found that Welsh consumers are returning to traditional shopping habits by choosing bricks over clicks. Shopping via the internet scored very low in Wales with only 11% of respondents saying that they intend to do local shopping online compared to 58% preferring to visit their local shop. However, 25% of those surveyed in Wales also said they would be more inclined to spend more with their local small business if they were available online.
Why shop local this Christmas?
At a time when shoppers want to find the perfect gift for their loved one, over two thirds of people (69%) in Wales believe they receive a more personalised service with their local retailer compared with larger businesses, while 64% say the customer service is generally better. However, only 25% of people in Wales think they will get a better deal from a small business compared with big businesses on the high street.
What is on the small business shopping list?
Local food and drink retailers are set to benefit from being top of the Christmas shopping list; 55% of this sample of Welsh Christmas celebrants will shop local for their festive food and 32% for their Christmas tipples. This is followed by flowers and plants (30%) and accessories (25%).
TSB’s SME Banking Director, Richard Davies, says:
“It’s encouraging to see that shopping locally with small businesses at Christmas comes high up the agenda for over half of those surveyed. However, on average, Christmas shoppers still intend to spend almost three times more in larger retailers (£210) than they will with their local small business (£70) this Christmas.
“Christmas can be a critical time for many small businesses so it’s important for local communities to support their local business in any way they can.”