Consumer sentiment divided heading into 2023

13th December 2022 | Jack Oliver

30% of British consumers are feeling negative heading into the New Year, according to research from Attest.

Only 46% of the 1,000 Brits surveyed said they were feeling positive heading into 2023.

The data found that 61% of shoppers were pulling back on spending plans for 2023 as energy bills cause the biggest concern. Only 18% said they would be spending freely. There has been a 10.2 point increase in “fairly cautious” spending compared to last year and a 9.1 point increase in “very cautious” spending.

Unaffordable energy bills were the biggest issue raised, worrying 59% of those surveyed. The War in Ukraine (7%) was the second biggest concern with increases in petrol prices the third (6%).

38% of those surveyed cited being able to afford to eat out as their biggest issue with rising food prices, reflecting the difficulties felt by the hospitality sector in recent times.

However, more consumers are shopping in person more frequently, with a 6.2 point increase in people shopping daily and weekly to 65%. While the pandemic increased the frequency of online shopping among older consumers, however baby boomers are heading back to the high street. Over 40% of boomers said they now mostly or always shop in-store.

Younger shoppers, however, still favour online, with 47.2% of Gen Z and 49.7% of millennials mostly or always shop online.

Discount shopping is on the rise, too, with 40% of shoppers saying they are buying fewer things and consuming less, an 8.5 point decrease from 2021.

The pre-loved market may be a winning market next year, with 44% saying they intend to sell their unwanted goods, while 35% said they would be hunting for deals in charity and discount shops.

Jeremy King, CEO and founder of Attest, said: “Changes to fundamental behaviours are afoot also. Frugality is on the spectrum between necessary and contemporary. This research paints a picture of consumers trying to react to worsening economic conditions – with tectonic shifts in expectations, perceptions, channels and value – meaning brands now more than ever need to be on top of the changing needs and wants of consumers to succeed.”


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