Thu. Jul 18th, 2024

A new report shows that Europeans want to spend less and buy second-hand this Christmas.

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Second-hand marketplaces in Europe are set for an increase in traffic this Christmas, as consumers across Europe consider cutting costs this holiday season, according to new research from online classifieds group Adevinta.

The group’s survey of 5,000 European consumers across Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain, found that half of all respondents plan to spend less this Christmas due to the high cost of living.

The company, which counts second-hand marketplaces such as the French leboncoin, the German Kleinanzeigen (DE) and the Spanish Milanuncios among its European re-commerce marketplaces, also found that 64% of European consumers are considering shopping second-hand this festive period. 

The most cited reasons why consumers are contemplating shopping for second-hand items are the need to save money (47%) and a desire to shop more sustainably (37%).

In comparison, last year only nearly one-third (32%) of European consumers turned to the second-hand market for their Christmas shopping needs.

One-quarter of the consumers eyeing the second-hand market this year reported that they like gifting retro or nostalgic items, and a similar proportion (24%) stated they like sourcing items locally.

However, some Europeans still hold reservations about preloved gifting. Over a third (35%) of those who did not buy second-hand items last year said that they prefer to buy brand new.

“As this data shows, some people are still in the ‘new is best’ mindset, and so there’s a job to do in changing consumer perceptions to encourage a further shift towards more sustainable and cost-effective behaviour,” said Paul Heimann, head of re-commerce for Adevinta.

Where do all the unwanted gifts go?

Unwanted gifts are one of the unfortunate aspects of the festive period. Two-thirds of consumers state that they have received a brand-new gift that they’ve had no use for or simply not liked.

Encouragingly, only 6% of respondents say that they’ve thrown unwanted items away.

People are more likely to hold on to these unwanted gifts regardless. While 28% have kept items knowing they’ll never have a use for them, less than a quarter (23%) have sold unwanted items online.

One-third (33%) report having kept an item in case it became useful, and a similar proportion has regifted unwanted items at a later date (30%).

“Rather than holding onto unwanted gifts, re-commerce marketplaces allow consumers to give these items a second life and clear clutter, while also presenting an opportunity to generate some extra cash in the post-holiday period when budgets are tight,” said Heimann.

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