By Daniel Hunter

As tomorrow (Tuesday 17th September) marks 100 days to go until Christmas Day, new exclusive research conducted by OnePoll for retail technology company, Retail Assist, reveals the shopping strategies that consumers plan to use to crack Christmas this year.

With 34% of people having already bought their first Christmas present, shoppers are already getting ahead of the seasonal spending spree, using a mixture of in-store, mobile and online shopping to grab their gifts of choice.

Whilst the majority of people (57%) expect to shop using a mixture of online and offline shopping, 25% of consumers are expected to do all of their shopping online and only 15% of shoppers predicting they will buy all their Christmas gifts in-store.

Typically the drive to buy online has been to save time and money, but the results from Retail Assist’s research has exploded these myths. In fact the research revealed that shoppers on average will still spend 35 minutes browsing online per gift, with the main reason for avoiding the shops cited by 57% of people as being to avoid the crowd’s in-store and not bag a bargain.

Whilst tablet computers seemed to be the gift of choice in 2012, most shoppers (42%) planned to use their laptop to click through their shopping list, suggesting an element of multi-tasking Christmas jobs alongside home, work and family commitments.

This theory is reinforced with the insight that 42% of shoppers admit that they plan to sneakily buy a gift for a family member while they sit on the sofa watching TV and 6% of purchases will be made using a work computer. 15% of shoppers will use tablet devices and 5% will use mobile phones which also indicates that gifts may be grabbed on-the-go.

Tapping into technology is also set to take another step forward this Christmas as retailer’s Click & Collect services mature with 37% of consumers expecting to use this option to beat the high street battle.

Alan Morris, Executive Chairman and co-founder of leading technology company Retail Assist, said: “The retail industry has been gearing up for Christmas for months, but now as we hit 100 days to go this is an exciting and crucial time for high street and online retailers. This research should be encouraging to retailers as it shows that consumers are comfortable with using the wealth of online options, but also still value the experience of hitting the high street.

“However, with queues and crowds coming out as the top reason people are disinclined to hit the high street during Christmas, retailing giants should work to increase store efficiency, show accurate stock knowledge, and provide faster service in order to attract customers back.”

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