Kevin Jenkins, UK Ireland Managing Director Visa Europe said:
“All eyes were on Black Friday but spending for November as a whole confirms the trends we saw at the tail end of the month. Online spending surged, driven by double digit spend increases on the big weekend amid continued appetite for mobile, laptop and tablet shopping.
“The high street as a whole suffered a disappointing month, though our data suggests a flat, rather than declining performance on Black Friday itself. How long it takes for a Christmas stampede and how much appetite consumers have left following days of discounting should emerge in the next few days. It’s already clear though that the big winners this year were retailers who got their integrated offering right.
“Face-to-face wasn’t all doom and gloom in November though and winners on the high street did emerge. Brits tucked into meals and a tipple after shopping as hotels, bars and restaurants saw spending leap another 8.5% year on year. And the appetite for entertainment remains strong as we enter pantomime season with a 4.8% jump in recreation and culture spend.”
What UK businesses are saying:
Visa is tracking the sentiment of several small businesses across the UK on a monthly basis, asking about their views on the economy, business conditions and forecasts for the month ahead.
Quan Nguyen, Chi Café, London: We’ve had a very strong November, with customers treating themselves to generous orders and spending more on the food that they enjoy. Revenue has been boosted by orders for Christmas office lunches and we hope to see an increase in business as more people arrange meals to catch up with their loved ones over the festive period.
Imogen Hawthorne, Paisley Immy Cakes, Birmingham: November has surpassed our expectations and we’ve already had double the number of Christmas bookings that we received last year. Stir-up Sunday reminded many of our regulars to order their festive treats and some have even splashed out on extravagant cakes with extra tiers for their guests.
Linda Anthony, Cotswold Celebration Company, South Gloucestershire: This November is very similar to last and although orders for decorations are less susceptible to seasonal fluctuations since they need to be booked in advance we have benefitted from some late business, as well as additional requests for Christmas décor. Our clients are requesting more ornate placements and we find that we’re spending less time haggling over the price of these events.
Visa Europe is a payments technology business owned and operated by member banks and other payment service providers from 38 countries.
Visa Europe is at the heart of the payments ecosystem providing the services and infrastructure to enable millions of European consumers, businesses and governments to make electronic payments. Its members are responsible for issuing cards, signing up retailers and deciding cardholder and retailer fees. Visa Europe is also the largest transaction processor in Europe, responsible for processing more than 18 billion transactions annually.
There are more than 500m Visa cards in Europe, while €1 in every €6 spent in Europe is on a Visa card. Total expenditure on Visa cards exceeds €2 trillion annually, with €1.5 trillion spent at point-of-sale.
Since 2004, Visa Europe has been independent of Visa Inc. and incorporated in the UK, with an exclusive, irrevocable and perpetual licence in Europe. Both companies work in partnership to enable global Visa payments in more than 200 countries and territories.
View the latest Visa UK Consumer Spending Index here.