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Window shopping becomes windows shopping

1st June 2012 Print
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The instant buzz of shopping online has reached a new high for clothes shopping, with 44% of Brits now hitting the net at least once a month or more for their clothing purchases, with a committed 3% doing this daily. This is second only to groceries (50%) in terms of the nation’s buying habits, according to new research from Cotton Council International, published today.

Clothes shopping online has risen to 13% - up from only 3% two years ago, with consumers moving away from chain and speciality stores (down from 43% to 31.5%). Today’s research reveals 42% of consumers now use the internet to compare products and prices across stores; a third (33%) go online to browse the latest styles.

Stephanie Thiers-Ratcliffe, International Marketing Manager, Cotton Council International comments: “Our research reveals that there has been a marked uplift for people going online to research and buy clothing, but not at the expense of quality. This trend has seen retailers across the board take more of an interest in their online clothing offering – ensuring the customer experience, delivered both on and offline, is second to none.”

This year’s findings also shows that when shopping, Brits are choosing natural fibres, with over a third feeling that better quality clothing comes from natural fibres. And when shopping it’s cotton that comes out in front as the fabric of choice, with over a half of consumers heralding it as their preferred fibre for the clothes they like to wear the most.

Mirroring the economic climate, only 10% of us bought more than £500 on clothes last year, with the average amount spent being only £230. Over half of Brits fear they have less money to spend on clothing compared to last year, making spotting a bargain more important than ever as 40% of us now admit we buy clothes with at least a 20% discount all or most of the time. We’re also shopping less for ourselves than two years ago, as the figures indicate a 9% drop, which leaves just 40% of us now shopping once a month or more for clothes.

Nonetheless, a prevailing trait for British shoppers remains the desire for quality – with almost 60% of us preferring to spend more on better quality items, with 61% of consumers viewing ‘good quality’ clothes as those that are durable and long-lasting.

Cotton Council International’s biennial research – The Global Lifestyle Monitor Survey (GLM) investigates a wide range of lifestyle issues related to clothing, shopping and textiles among UK residents.

Stephanie Thiers-Ratcliffe, continues: “Today’s shoppers are more vigilant than ever – thinking harder about their clothing purchases and examining what and how much they need to buy. When shoppers are spending their cash they are ensuring that they get the best value by choosing quality items. Our COTTON USA ‘Naturally’ Mark is a symbol of purity, strength, comfort and quality and helps shoppers to identify premium cotton items that are made to last.”

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