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We are halfway through the shopping season and Australia achieved a record breaking sales weekend during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. According to Australia Post, online shopping was up by ~42% during the weekend and ~2 million households placed ~13 million orders online. Categories like food and liquor, home and garden, health and beauty and variety store purchases are up ~72% YoY. Sales are forecasted to remain strong leading into Christmas. It's time for every retailer to up their e-commerce game.

We already shared a strategic guide to Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales and consider this an extension. Now that we have more data to understand shopper's behaviour in the new normal, this article will help you to make the most out of the next big sales event "Boxing Day"

The concept of Boxing Day comes from the 1800s. After Christmas, the rich used to give a box of gifts to their servants. Servants visited their families and gifted them with gift boxes. Boxing day got its name from those gift boxes and later became a public holiday in England and other Commonwealth countries. Retailers then turned this into a shopping holiday and started attracting more visitors by slashing prices. It is the biggest sales holiday in Australia and, 2020 is as promising as ever.

How shoppers behave in the new normal?
  1. 81% agree that brands should give back during the holidays. (Bigcommerce - 2020 Holiday Predictions and Insights)

    Shoppers have higher expectations this year and they expect brands to reward their loyalty. As a seller, you have to think about the bigger picture of customer acquisition and retention by promoting smart offers to attract them.

  2. 85% want to shop to support the economy (Bigcommerce)

    There's a global trend of shopping from small businesses and even though their deals are not as attractive as retail giants, they have an upper hand. If you are a small business, you should focus more on meeting your customers where they are (Online).

  3. Last year, ~37% of Australians bought a brand online they wouldn’t usually buy because it was on sale. This jumps to 46% for Gen Z and 48% for Gen Y (Paypal market research 2019)

    This is an opportunity for sellers to get rid of slow-moving stock. Offering attractive discounts on low-value items will help them attract sellers towards their high ticket items.

  4. 22% of the shoppers think that they find it easy to shop directly on social media. (Bigcommerce)

    Social media buying has accelerated due to lockdowns. Small sellers started building their online presence using Facebook Marketplace. Now that it has become a powerful tool of direct to customer (D2C) selling. Facebook is rolling out;

    • Instagram Shop.
    • Replacing the Instagram Activity tab with the Shop tab by risking the user experience.
    • Introducing Facebook Shops.
    • Facebook commerce management.
  5. Generation Y & Z will travel less and consume more

    Limitations on international travel will attract more money towards the retail industry. Shoppers have to make sure that they create a frictionless experience that the youth demand. The Finder forecast that the GenZ will spend $400-$500 on average on presents. To attract a portion of this, shoppers have to;

    • Feature products that attract youth.
    • Integrate BNPL payment plans like ZipPay Afterpay & PayPal Pay Later.
    • Accept Google and Apple Pay.
    • Offer fast and free shipping.
    • Set plans for retargeting.
  6. Experience-driven online pop-up stores and online pop-up events are trending.

    Retailers are banking on online pop-up stores to feature new products, special offers, or holiday gift guides. This is a great way to reach a selected audience with a targeted product range. Even if you don't have a permanent eCommerce store, having a seasonal pop-up store online is a solution.

  7. Shoppers have higher expectations for 2021.

    People are keen to leave this year behind and have a kick start to the new year. End of the year purchases will gain more attraction to products that are related to goal setting, personal development, healthy living and financial management. You can use this understanding to generate more sales by

    • Featuring new year related products.
    • Create ad campaigns targeting new year resolutions.
    • Offering meaningful gifts that has a long term value (few months Gym membership when buying sports equipment from your store)
How shoppers behave in the new normal?

When planning a Boxing Day campaign, It’s vital to understand that Christmas & Boxing Day are based on the idea of giving and gifting. (i.e donation focused campaigns such as “buy one give one free”). The Following is a list of basic guidelines to follow.

  1. When deciding offers, consider the lifetime value of the customers you attract.
  2. Set up Google Pixel and Facebook Pixel for retargeting.
  3. Consider creative ways to increase your email list.
  4. Use email marketing to convert abandoned carts.
  5. Reward customer loyalty with early access to offers.
  6. Make sure that your systems can handle unexpected traffic.
  7. Have clear and flexible shipping and return policies in place.
Compare your strategy with a few industry giants.

Understanding what the retail giants are up to will help you to validate your direction and set up KPIs. We looked into some retailers to find out their end of the year sales strategy.

The Iconic

They haven't announced their boxing day deals yet, but last year they were offering 70% off on selected styles for brands like Nike, Polo, Bec & Bridge and CK. They have introduced an online pop-up store called "Gift Joy". It's a booklet where they feature a selection of items according to various budgets and demographics. Their free shipping and extended free return policy will drive more conversions. They offer free express (1 day) shipping for orders over $50 and have simplified the return experience so that the customer can return goods for free by using the same package they received. Added to that, they have extended the return period until the end of January.


Catch are having everyday offers for selected product ranges and they have announced that there will be attractive Boxing Day sales offers on brands like Dyson, Bonds, Apple & Dermalogica. We notice that they focus on gathering customer data by promoting

  • E-mail subscriptions for deal updates.
  • App installations for unlocking coupons.
  • 30 days free Registrations for club catch membership.

They reward loyalty by offering early access to their deals and it's worth noticing that the e-commerce giant is going to have a physical pop up shop at Target Highpoint on Boxing Day to capture instore shoppers.

David Jones

They plan their Boxing Day concept around the theme "The Joy of Giving". They promote gifting, gift cards and a CSR campaign to donate $100,000 of their seasonal sales to the Australian Red Cross. These strategies confirm that most of the retail giants have already anticipated shopper's behaviour.

We hope that the article gave you a comprehensive idea about how to benefit from the end of the year sales event. Shoppers behaviour during this season suggests that the future of the industry will depend on e-commerce. If you are yet to invest in a fully integrated e-commerce ecosystem, make that your new year's resolution. Contact the team at Maytech to find out how we can help you in the new year and beyond.

How Maytech can help

We are an Australian based software development company that specialises in bespoke web and mobile application development, eCommerce solutions, process automation and staff augmentation. If you find this content relevant, we are sure that we can help you improve the way you do business. Contact us to find out how our technical expertise and 16 years of industry experience can deliver results for your business.

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