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The ‘Most In-Demand’ Christmas Gifts for 2021

It’s the most festive time of the year! With an increasingly elongated Black Friday ‘weekend’ now out of the way, Christmas is the next big focus for eCommerce retailers.

Online retail spending during the Christmas period continues to rise year-on-year in the United Kingdom – according to recent Statistica data, online Christmas spending amounted to approximately 25 billion British pounds in 2016.

Looking to the last few years, COVID caused consumer shopping habits to change, with eCommerce particularly experiencing a worldwide surge. As eCommerce consultants we wanted to delve into the data on how this is impacting Christmas shopping, so we analysed search trend data for 98 relevant gift-related keywords and phrases to discover which gifts might be most popular for Christmas 2021 in the UK.

Read on to find out more…

The research included multiple categories (including toys, jewellery, technology, etc.) and for different recipients (family, friends, pets, colleagues, etc.), and looked at various data points. Data points included monthly search volume across the UK in October 2021 and Y-o-Y change.

October 2021 Search Volumes

To analyse the demand, we used Google Keyword Planner to collate the search volume in October 2021 for 98 relevant gift-related keywords and phrases. Generic keywords were mostly used, but some tech and toy brands were included in the research – these were chosen due to high amount of coverage in Christmas 2021 gift guides.

Technology and toys made up the majority of the ‘top 20’:

RANKCATEGORYKEYWORD / PHRASEOCTOBER 2021 SEARCH VOLUME
1Technologyapple1,830,000
2ToysLEGO673,000
3Technologysamsung550,000
=4Toysstar wars201,000
=4Toyspaw patrol201,000
=6Technologynintendo165,000
=6Genericchristmas gifts165,000
=8Genericmens gifts135,000
=8Toysbarbie135,000
=10Genericpersonalised gifts110,000
=10Technologyoculus110,000
=12Toysplaymobil90,500
=12Technologysony90,500
=14Technologysonos74,000
=14Toyshot wheels74,000
16Toyspolly pocket60,500
=17Technologygoogle nest49,500
=17Genericstocking filler49,500
=19ToysLOL surprise40,500
=19Familydad gifts40,500
=19Genericwomens gifts40,500
=22Technologyamazon echo27,100
=22Technologypanasonic27,100
=22Genericsecret santa27,100
=22Genericchristmas gifts for him27,100
=22Genericchristmas gifts for boyfriend27,100
=27Home and Livinggarden gifts18,100
=27Otherexperience gifts18,100
=29Foodfood hamper14,800
=29Familygrandma gifts14,800
=29Technologyaudio technica14,800
32Familyauntie gifts12,100
=33Toysgames gifts9,900
=33Familyteenager gifts9,900
=33Genericchristmas gifts for families9,900
=33Genericchristmas gifts for charity9,900
=37Familymum gifts8,100
=37Petsdog gifts8,100
=37Beauty and Groominggrooming gifts8,100
=40Genericunique gifts6,600
=40Genericchristmas gifts for her6,600
=40Familyhusband gifts6,600
=43Foodbaking gifts5,400
=43Foodfood gifts5,400
=43Genericchristmas gifts for girlfriend5,400
=43Genericcheap gifts5,400
=43Childrennewborn gifts5,400
=48Familyuncle gifts4,400
=48Home and Livinghome gifts4,400
=48Familywife gifts4,400
=48Genericchristmas gifts for friends4,400
=48Othertravel gifts4,400
=53Familydaughter gifts3,600
=53Home and Livingplant gifts3,600
=53Petscat gifts3,600
=53Familyparents gifts3,600
=57Foodalcohol gifts2,900
=57Foodcooking gifts2,900
=57Genericcool gifts2,900
=57Otherart gifts2,900
=57Workcorporate gifts2,900
=62Genericsubscription gifts2,400
=62Jewelleryjewellery gifts2,400
=64Beauty and Groomingbeauty gifts1,900
=64Genericluxury gifts1,900
=64Technologytech gifts1,900
=67Genericchristmas gifts for couples1,600
=67Otherbook gifts1,600
=69Genericdiy gifts1,300
=69Familygrandpa gifts1,300
=69Familyson gifts1,300
=69Childrenchildrens gifts1,300
=69Genericweird gifts1,300
=69Healthwellbeing gifts1,300
75Petspet gifts1,000
=76Sport and Fitnessfitness gifts720
=76Jewellerybracelet gifts720
=78Sport and Fitnesssport gifts590
=78Familypartner gifts590
=78Jewellerynecklace gifts590
81Genericlast minute gifts480
=82Genericpractical gifts390
=82Jewelleryearrings gifts390
=84Genericfestive gifts260
=84Jewellerywatch gifts260
=86Healthhealth gifts210
=86Jewelleryring gifts210
=88Fashionfashion gifts170
=88Foodgourmet gifts170
=88Toystoy gifts170
91Beauty and Groomingfragrance gifts110
=92Fashionaccessories gifts90
=92Foodconfectionary gifts90
=94Fashionclothing gifts70
=94Fashionshoes gifts70
=94Otherentertainment gifts70
=97Genericchristmas gifts for myself50
98Healthintimate gifts10

By Category

When it comes to the top keyword or phrase by gift category, the findings revealed that:

CATEGORYKEYWORD / PHRASEOCTOBER 2021 SEARCH VOLUME
Beauty and Groominggrooming gifts8,100
Foodfood hamper27,100
Healthwellbeing gifts1,900
Home and Livinggarden gifts27,100
Jewelleryjewellery gifts2,400
Otherexperience gifts14,800
Petsdog gifts8,100
Sport and Fitnessfitness gifts1,300
Technologyapple1,830,000
ToysLEGO673,000

‘Grooming gifts’ (8,100) far exceeded ‘beauty gifts’ (1,900) and ‘fragrance gifts’ (110).

‘Food hamper’ (14,800) beat ‘baking gifts’ (5,400), ‘cooking gifts’ (2,900), ‘alcohol gifts’ (2,900), and ‘confectionary gifts’ (90),

The generic phrase ‘jewellery gifts’ (2,400), ‘bracelet gifts’ (720), ‘necklace gifts’ (590), ‘earring gifts’ (390), ‘watch gifts’ (260), and ‘ring gifts’ (210)

When it came to pet owners, ‘dog gifts’ (8,100) almost tripled the search volume of ‘cat gifts’ (3,600).

Tech brand ‘Apple’ (1,830,000) reigned supreme, followed by ‘Samsung’ (550,000), ‘Nintendo’ (165,000), ‘Oculus’ (110,000), ‘Sony’ (90,500), and ‘Sonos’ (74,000).

When it came to toys, ‘LEGO’ (673,000) was an outstanding front-runner, followed by ‘star wars’ (201,000), ‘paw patrol’ (201,000), ‘Barbie’ (135,000), ‘Playmobil’ (90,500), ‘hot wheels’ (74,000), ‘polly pocket’ (60,5000), and ‘LOL suprise’ (40,500).

YoY Change

To get another view on changing demand, we also analysed the YoY (year-on-year) change, focusing on the most recent available data – October 2021 versus October 2020.

YoY Increase

The findings highlighted that, of the 98 phrases in the analysis, 18 saw Y-o-Y increases from 2020 to 2021:

RANKCATEGORYKEYWORD / PHRASEYoY GROWTH
1Beauty and Groominggrooming gifts+179%
2Genericchristmas gifts for myself+150%
=3Genericchristmas gifts for friends+52%
=3Othertravel gifts+52%
5Otherexperience gifts+50%
6Genericwomens gifts+49%
=7Genericfestive gifts+24%
=7Jewellerywatch gifts+24%
=7Jewelleryring gifts+24%
=10Childrennewborn gifts+23%
=10Jewellerynecklace gifts+23%
=12ToysLEGO+22%
=12Technologyoculus+22%
=12Toyshot wheels+22%
=12Genericsecret santa+22%
=12Genericchristmas gifts for him+22%
=12Genericchristmas gifts for boyfriend+22%
=12Jewellerybracelet gifts+22%

The findings show that grooming, travel, and experience gifts saw the biggest Y-o-Y increase in search volume, indicating that these may be popular ideas for 2021.

By recipient, this year there has been an increases in searches for gifts for ‘myself’, showing that more people are self-gifting and treating themselves this festive period. Searches for gifts specifically for ‘women’, for ‘newborn’ babies, for ‘boyfriend’, for ‘him’, and for ‘secret santa’ recipients also increased since 2020.

Looking at product categories, jewellery (‘watches’, ‘rings’, ‘necklaces’, ‘bracelets’), toys (‘LEGO’, ‘hot wheels’) and technology (‘Oculus’) were specific key growth areas.

No YoY Change

The findings highlighted that, of the 98 phrases in the analysis, 28 saw no Y-o-Y change from 2020 to 2021. These included:

CATEGORYKEYWORD / PHRASEOCTOBER 2021 SEARCH VOLUME
TechnologySamsung550,000
Toyspaw patrol201,000
Genericchristmas gifts165,000
ToysBarbie135,000
TechnologySonos74,000
Familydad gifts40,500
Familyteenager gifts9,900
Genericchristmas gifts for families9,900
Genericchristmas gifts for charity9,900
Petsdog gifts8,100
Genericchristmas gifts for her6,600
Familyhusband gifts6,600
Genericcheap gifts5,400
Familywife gifts4,400
Workcorporate gifts2,900
Jewelleryjewellery gifts2,400
Genericluxury gifts1,900
Technologytech gifts1,900
Sport and Fitnesssport gifts590
Familypartner gifts590
Genericlast minute gifts480
Jewelleryearrings gifts390
Healthhealth gifts210
Toystoy gifts170
Fashionclothing gifts70
Fashionshoes gifts70
Otherentertainment gifts70
Healthintimate gifts10

‘Samsung’, ‘Paw Patrol’, ‘Barbie’, and ‘Sonos’ were amongst brands which have experienced no YoY change between 2020 and 2021. The same is true for the phrases ‘christmas gifts for charity’, ‘cheap gifts’, ‘corporate gifts’ and ‘luxury gifts’ alike.

YoY Decrease

The findings highlighted that, of the 98 phrases in the analysis, 52 had a Y-o-Y decrease from 2020 to 2021, These included:

RANKCATEGORYKEYWORD / PHRASEYoY GROWTH
98Technologyamazon echo-55%
=95Fashionfashion gifts-47%
=95Fashionaccessories gifts-47%
=95Foodconfectionary gifts-47%
=93Genericpersonalised gifts-45%
=93Foodfood hamper-45%
92Petspet gifts-38%
91Beauty and Groomingfragrance gifts-35%
90Foodalcohol gifts-34%
=82Toysplaymobil-33%
=82Toyspolly pocket-33%
=82Technologygoogle nest-33%
=82Technologypanasonic-33%
=82Foodbaking gifts-33%
=82Familydaughter gifts-33%
=82Home and Livingplant gifts-33%
=82Genericsubscription gifts-33%
81Genericdiy gifts-32%
80Sport and Fitnessfitness gifts-28%
79Beauty and Groomingbeauty gifts-21%
=66Genericunique gifts-19%
=66Familyuncle gifts-19%
=66Home and Livinghome gifts-19%
=66Foodcooking gifts-19%
=66Genericcool gifts-19%
=66Otherart gifts-19%
=66Familygrandpa gifts-19%
=66Familyson gifts-19%
=66Childrenchildrens gifts-19%
=66Genericweird gifts-19%
=66Healthwellbeing gifts-19%
=66Genericpractical gifts-19%
=66Foodgourmet gifts-19%
=49Technologyapple-18%
=49Toysstar wars-18%
=49Technologynintendo-18%
=49Genericmens gifts-18%
=49Technologysony-18%
=49Genericstocking filler-18%
=49ToysLOL surprise-18%
=49Home and Livinggarden gifts-18%
=49Familygrandma gifts-18%
=49Technologyaudio technica-18%
=49Familyauntie gifts-18%
=49Toysgames gifts-18%
=49Familymum gifts-18%
=49Foodfood gifts-18%
=49Genericchristmas gifts for girlfriend-18%
=49Petscat gifts-18%
=49Familyparents gifts-18%
=47Genericchristmas gifts for couples-16%
=47Otherbook gifts-16%

The findings show that ‘fashion’, ‘confectionary’, and ‘personalised’ gifts were amongst those which saw the biggest Y-o-Y decreases in search volume, indicating that these may be less popular ideas for 2021. This year there have also been decreases in searches for gifts for ‘pets’, as well as ‘alcohol’ or ‘subscription’ based gifts.

We hope this research has given you inspiration for what to sell (or buy) this festive period!

The next few weeks is the optimal time for U.K. retailers to capitalise on the demand, as consumers search for suitable gifts for their loved ones.

We support online retail businesses to grow online, helping them to make more online sales and improving the lifetime value of an eCommerce customer – if you want to hear more about our services, contact us!

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