Dentsu homes in on Christmas cost concerns

Concerns about the rising cost of living are impacting on Irish people’s intentions to spend on some categories this Christmas, Dentsu’s latest Pulse report shows. The categories include food and drinks consumed at home, heating the home and decorating it with Christmas lights. Around three-quarters of Irish adults are concerned about the rising cost of living.

The report says around 80 per cent of females and the 45-54 and C2DEFs cohorts expressed the highest levels of concern. General intentions are to spend less this Christmas compared with the same time last year, across all categories. Two in every five intend to spend less on home heat and going out to entertainment venues that serve food and drink.

Consumers under the age of 35 are most likely to spend less this Christmas. In comparison, those aged 35-44 are more inclined to spend more than other age cohorts this year, particularly on food and non-alcoholic drinks (32 per cent will spend more this year, compared with 26 per cent in the overall sample) and alcohol to drink at home (36 per cent).

Two in every five in this cohort will spend more on going out this year.

Dunnes Stores, M&S and off-licences will be the winners with a higher ratio of shoppers visiting these stores for food and alcohol. The discounters will do less well than normal, but will still be near the top of the festive list. Consumers aged 18-34 are likely to shop at Dunnes and M&S compared with the proportion in that age group that usually shop there.

Men are more likely to shop at off-licences over Christmas than they usually do.


Clothing, footwear, cosmetics, beauty and perfume are the most popular shopping categories among Irish adults this year. One in four shoppers intend to buy sports clothing and equipment and around one in every five will buy electrical goods. Across most categories, women are more likely to shop for gifts than men, with the exception of electrical goods.

Younger consumers, age 18-34, are more likely to shop for jewellery and watches (21 per cent), alcohol (17 per cent), experience days (19 per cent), household goods (15 per cent) and furniture (three per cent). Confectionery and alcohol are two categories where offline purchases dominate, with almost three-quarters and four in five shoppers respectively.

Overall, almost 30 per cent of consumers will try and buy Irish or locally produced goods this Christmas. The report claims that 35-44 year olds are more prone to buy Irish. It was previously shown that this group are more likely to have young children and be more environmentally conscious, which could explain the higher tendency to buy local.

Dentsu interviewed 1,000 Irish adults about their spending intentions over the festive season. Similar studies recently have shown that people plan to spend more overall this year. While this may be the case in absolute terms, the Pulse survey looks at consumer perceptions of intentions to spend, rather than the monetary value of people’s budgets this Christmas.



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