Consumer purchasing habits shift in response to cost-of-living crisis

Purchasing patterns among UK consumers are beginning to shift as increasingly savvy shoppers modify their buying habits in response to the cost-of-living crisis, according to latest trends.

Up-to-date market statistics show that Britons are preparing for the economically rocky months ahead by making shrewd purchases that will help them combat surging energy bills. Data from online marketplace, OnBuy shows an increase in the sale of products that could provide long-term savings like radiator reflectors, draught excluders and air fryers.

According to the British-based firm’s CEO, Cas Paton, the trend is evidence of an ever-increasingly knowledgeable consumer in Britain, who is preparing for the cold months ahead with smart purchases.

This growing trend, according to Paton, is understandably emerging in response to the ongoing cost of living and energy crises, which have resulted in record-breakingly austere financial forecasts. A typical household energy bill is expected to rise to £2,500 per year from October 1.

Cas Paton said: “As a nation, we are going to feel the effects of ongoing crises on energy and cost of living this year, with energy bills going up within the next week and inflation expected to increase even further.

“In response to these crises, we are seeing some quite remarkable consumer trends, as it’s becoming increasingly clear that shoppers are shifting their purchasing habits in response to the economic outlook.

“We are seeing drastic increases in the sales of items that work to reduce energy usage, such as household insulation and radiator reflectors, which both help keep heat inside the home.

“Ultimately, what this tells us is that the British buyer is becoming an increasingly savvy spender. This is a surprising, unprecedented, and frankly fascinating development, which lays bare the ever-evolving nature of consumer trends.”

Data from this month shows sales of clothes dryers and airers soaring by more than 6000%, as households avoid energy-guzzling tumble dryers, while sales of electric blankets have skyrocketed by up to 1,350%. According to MoneySavingExpert it costs roughly 3p an hour to run an electric blanket, meaning that average weekly usage would add up to just £1.47 – making them a cost-efficient alternative to central heating. Elsewhere, air fryers, which can operate at half the energy usage of an oven* have seen a staggering surge in sales this year, with OnBuy data showing an 800% increase for some models in September. Meanwhile, over the course of a single week in August, sales of household insulation increased 1200%.

Paton added: “Purchases as we’ve seen over the past year, and especially within the past few months, clearly represent a financial commitment, however, consumers appear to be telling us that they believe these expenditures will pay off long-term. They might just be on to something!”

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