What Months are the Best for Boosting Retail Sales in the UK?

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When it comes to boosting sales for your B2C business based in the UK, timing is fundamental. There are crucial dates and months in the UK seasonal calendar that can significantly increase consumer spending. In this article, we will cover how your business can optimise some of these popular events to see a consequential rise in revenue.

While there is no one-size-fits-all answer to the best months for boosting sales within the retail sector, some general trends can be observed. To quickly scope out the sales periods in the UK, businesses should know that there are no specific regulations on when sales can take place, and retailers are free to run promotions and discounts throughout the year. In contrast, France has strict regulations on when sales can take place, with two official sales periods mandated by law. During these periods, one in winter and one in summer, retailers are allowed to sell products at a discount and must adhere to certain rules and regulations. In the UK, there is greater flexibility for retailers to run sales and promotions at any time, allowing mid-season sales and opportunities to align boosting revenue withholding sales and discounts alongside some of the important UK calendar dates.

Businesses should take advantage of the first month in the seasonal calendar, the “January Sales,” an annual event in the UK that takes place immediately after the Christmas period. The popularity of the “January Sales” can be attributed to post-Christmas consumer behaviour, with many shoppers looking for bargains and discounts after the holiday season. Retailers take advantage of this by offering heavily discounted prices on a range of products, including clothing, electronics, and home goods. Businesses may also look to clear out old stock from the excess Christmas merchandise left over and make way for new products. This creates a sense of urgency among consumers who are keen to take advantage of the deals on offer before they disappear. The rise of online shopping can mean an opening for businesses to grab sales by offering exclusive online-only deals and promotions to drive traffic to their websites.

Events that capture the emotional selling point…

Emotional holidays, such as Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, and Father’s Day, present a significant opportunity for businesses to boost their sales. These holidays tap into consumers’ emotions and create a sense of urgency to buy gifts and experiences that express their feelings.

Valentine’s Day is another significant event that can boost profits for businesses, and it is more widely celebrated in the UK than in other countries such as Japan and France. According to research by Statista in 2021, 44% of UK adults planned to celebrate Valentine’s Day, compared to just 25% in France and 26% in Japan. In 2021, UK consumers spent an estimated £787m on Valentine’s Day, according to research from Mintel.

Mother’s Day is celebrated on the fourth Sunday in Lent, while Father’s Day is celebrated on the third Sunday in June. These holidays are significant for UK consumers as they provide an opportunity to celebrate the important role that parents play in their lives and to spend time with their families participating in holiday-related activities. This means that businesses operating in the UK can take advantage of the increased footfall and consumer spending during this period to boost their sales and revenue growth.

Creating targeted campaigns for these holidays with the use of digital marketing techniques, such as social media, is an effective way for businesses to engage with their audience and drive sales during this period. Studies have shown that emotive imagery can significantly increase consumer engagement with marketing materials, leading to higher conversion rates and increased sales. In particular, UK consumers respond well to signage that evokes positive emotions such as joy, love, and happiness. Social media posts that feature emotional messaging or imagery tend to generate higher engagement rates among UK consumers. A survey by Sprout Social found that 65% of UK consumers are more likely to engage with social media posts that feature emotional content.

By leveraging the emotional connection of these holidays, businesses can build personal relationships with consumers, thereby strengthening their brand loyalty.

Easter is also an important event for businesses, with UK consumers spending an estimated £1.7bn on Easter-related purchases in 2021, according to research from the Centre for Retail Research. Easter is an important date in Christianity, the most popular religion amongst the UK population, which leads it to become a national holiday with many children celebrating. This can be a beneficial time for the food and beverage industry as they can leverage the holiday to create promotions centred around children’s products and offer seasonal products such as Easter eggs or bunny teddies. Many businesses can seize the holiday to create themed products or tailor their existing products to a theme through packaging and campaigns.

The summer months, especially August, could be a good time for businesses to focus on boosting their sales. August is a peak holiday season for many UK consumers, with many people taking time off work or school to go on vacation or enjoy a staycation. As a result, businesses that offer travel and leisure services, such as hotels, resorts, airlines, restaurants, and attractions, can expect to see a surge in demand during this period. Offering promotional deals all year round, for example, discounts on travel packages, can be great for attracting more customers, as UK consumers typically book summer vacations months in advance. Furthermore, August is the month when many UK festivals and events take place, such as the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Notting Hill Carnival, and the Great British Beer Festival, which attract thousands of visitors each year. Additionally, following the pandemic, more UK consumers are opting for domestic travel and staycations, making August an even more important month for businesses in this industry to capitalise on the demand.

The Golden Quarter

In the UK, the term “golden quarter” refers to the final three months of the year, spanning from October to December, which is a crucial period for retailers due to a spike in consumer spending during the holiday season. The term is widely used in commercial circles, and its significance has only increased with the growth of e-commerce and online shopping.

Halloween is celebrated in the UK as an annual event that takes place on the 31st of October and presents a significant opportunity for businesses to boost their sales. The historical roots of Halloween as an ancient Celtic festival may be one of the reasons why it is celebrated more in the UK and America than in other countries that may not have as strong a historical or cultural connection to Halloween. The celebration comes from the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, marking the end of the harvest season and is believed to blur the boundary between the living and dead. According to Statista, UK consumers spent an estimated £687m on Halloween products in 2022. The UK has fully embraced the holiday, with many people dressing up in costumes, decorating their homes, and hosting parties. Businesses that offer products and services associated with Halloween, such as costumes, decorations, food and drink, and entertainment, can expect to see increased demand during this period. Effective Halloween marketing campaigns can include limited edition products, themed events, and promotions, and engaging social media content that taps into the fun and spooky spirit of the holiday.

November, which includes Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and the run-up to Christmas, is key for seeing an increase in consumer spending. This period sees a significant increase in consumer spending, as shoppers take advantage of the sales and deals on offer. In 2022, consumers were expected to spend a total of 8.71 billion British pounds over the course of the Black Friday weekend, with 3.9 billion of which spent in stores. This trend is expected to continue, making November a crucial month for businesses looking to boost their sales.

Christmas is undoubtedly the most important event in the UK’s seasonal calendar, and it presents a massive opportunity for businesses to boost their sales. This makes Christmas a crucial period for businesses to focus on, with the most significant sales potential in the weeks leading up to the holiday. According to a recent study by YouGov on Christian religious holidays, approximately 86% of British individuals stated that they observe Christmas. Christmas is a time of year when people tend to spend more money on gifts, decorations, and food, which means retailers can leverage the festive season to create attractive promotions and offers, as well as seasonal products and services. Following Christmas Day, the UK celebrates Boxing Day, the day after, which is matched with Boxing Day sales, a key date for retail footfall, when UK customers head to the high streets for huge discounts or shop online for money off products and services. This is highly important for first-time businesses in the UK to remember, as countries like France do not have Boxing Day, and UK customers may expect to see discounts on their products even if not advertised.

One example of a UK retailer that boosts sales through advertising during the Christmas period is John Lewis, a well-known department store chain. John Lewis is known for its highly anticipated annual Christmas adverts, which often tell heart-warming stories and feature popular music covers. These adverts have become a cultural phenomenon in the UK, and their release marks the start of the holiday season for many people. For example, John Lewis’ 2019 Christmas advert “Excitable Edgar” received over 9 million views on YouTube. Through these ads, John Lewis aims to evoke emotions and create a connection with its customers, ultimately leading to increased sales during the Christmas period.

By paying attention to seasonal trends and consumer behaviour, businesses can often identify the best months for boosting their sales in the UK. By planning promotions and marketing efforts accordingly, they can take advantage of these trends and see a significant increase in revenue. operviser can help a business achieve its full potential in targeted advertising for these specific events, increasing brand image among the UK consumer and, in return, boosting sales.

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