Just one in three festive shoppers always check that discounts in the sales are genuine
November 25th, 2022, Christien Pheby

Just one in three festive shoppers always check that discounts in the sales are genuine

Commentators such as MoneySavingExpert.com’s Martin Lewis have worried that the excitement around festive sales such as Black Friday/Cyber Monday can lead consumers towards bad purchase decisions. One concern is that the hype around these events can induce people to purchase things they otherwise wouldn’t have bought. Data from YouGov RealTime shows that, when asked, three in five festive shoppers say they mostly buy items they would have eventually purchased at full price (59%) – but a third (33%) say they mostly buy items they wouldn’t have eventually bought at full price.

Another concern is that retailers aren't always transparent about whether an item is genuinely cheaper than it is at other times of the year. While our data also shows that a third of Britons "always" check that the products on offer in festive sales are cheaper than they are at other times of the year (32%), this is still a minority of consumers overall. Three in ten (29%) say they "often" research the offer before buying the item, but a quarter say they only do so sometimes (25%) – while one in eight (12%) say they rarely or never verify that a discount is real.

So while a majority of Britons do purchase items in the sales that they were intending to buy anyway, some may be caught up in the flurry of excitement around Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Boxing Day – and lose money in the process. And while most do usually or always check that product offers in the sales are real, almost two in five say they only do so sometimes/rarely or never (37%), leaving them vulnerable to fake discounts.


YouGov RealTime Omnibus provides quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. This study was conducted online on 24-25 November 2022, with a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults in Great Britain (aged 18+ years), using a questionnaire designed by YouGov.

Data figures have been weighted by age, gender, education level, region, and social grade to be representative of all adults in Great Britain, and reflect the latest ONS population estimates. Learn more about YouGov RealTime Omnibus. 

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