News release

Date: 19th December 2013

Image of men as panicky last-minute Christmas shoppers is a myth

Small businesses urged to start targeting male shoppers earlier and online, as new hibu research reveals most men start their Christmas shopping well before December

Reading, UK, 19th December 2013. – The stereotype of men panic-buying presents on Christmas Eve is a myth, according to new research from hibu. Six in ten (61 per cent) of men start buying their Christmas presents well before ‘Cyber Monday’ – the first Monday in December that is considered the start of the festive buying season. In fact, a third (33 per cent) start their shopping in October or earlier.

The poll of 1,000 UK adult internet users paints a picture of a nation in love with Christmas shopping, with men as organised and up-to-date as women. Overall, around two in five (38 per cent) start buying presents before November, and a fifth (19 per cent) begin in September or earlier.

There was good news for small businesses, with more than a quarter (28 per cent) of consumers buying 50 per cent or more of their Christmas presents from local shops, while more than half (51 per cent) will do at least 25 per cent of their Christmas shopping locally. More than a third (36 per cent) said it was important to shop with local businesses rather than national chains at Christmas.

“The old cliché that men hate Christmas shopping and leave it until the last minute can now be consigned to the past,” said Richard Hanscott, UK CEO of hibu, a leading provider of digital marketing solutions and websites for businesses. “Only eight per cent of men will delay their Christmas shopping until the last week before Christmas, and only seven per cent (who shop online for Christmas) say they do not enjoy doing it – almost identical to women.”

He continued: “With many people saying that it is important to buy from local businesses rather than national chains at Christmas, it’s important for local businesses and small shops to have a good online presence and, ideally, an e-shop so that they can capture the largest amount of shoppers – not just in December, but earlier in the year.”

The poll of 1,000 UK internet users also found that:

•Of men who Christmas shop online a massive 93 per cent of men say they enjoy Christmas shopping – but only 10 per cent said that they preferred shopping in-store to buying online, underlining the value to businesses of having a strong web presence

•Nearly a quarter of online Christmas shoppers (23 per cent) say they will use their mobile or tablet for online Christmas shopping at home, further reinforcing the need for businesses to ensure their website is “mobile-friendly”

•A third (33 per cent) of online Christmas shoppers said they had done online Christmas shopping while at work

•Almost as many men (20 per cent) as women (22 per cent) had completed their Christmas shopping by December 12

•New technology has enabled consumers to shop while “multi-tasking” – almost one in ten women (8 per cent) say they have done Christmas shopping online in the bath and one in ten men (10 per cent) admits to buying Christmas gifts online while otherwise occupied in the “smallest room”


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About hibu:
hibu helps communities thrive by facilitating millions of connections each year between consumers who want to find products and services locally and the merchants who provide them.

hibu helps merchants compete in the digital world with a broad range of marketing and commerce solutions delivered online and through hibu’s direct sales teams. Building on its heritage as a premier directories provider, hibu continues to offer a full range of print- and distribution-based marketing services.

hibu operates in the UK, US, Spain, Argentina, Chile, Peru and US Hispanic markets. In the twelve months to 31 March 2013, hibu had one million SME customers and total revenues of £1.3 billion.

Atomic PR
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7478 7801

hibu – Media
Demelza Fryer-Saxby
Tel: +44 (0) 118 358 2977
Mobile: +44 (0)783 489 3174

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