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Consumers aim to cut spending in 2019, new study reveals

16 January 2019

Consumers are planning to spend less on sweet treats and premium toiletries this year, according to new research from payment services firm  Paymentsense.

The study reveals that 56% of UK consumers are planning or considering cutting their spending over the coming year. Survey respondents expect to save an average of £131 a month, or £1,572 during 2019.

Shoppers plan to achieve these household cost savings by cutting back on popular products like sweets, crisps, cake and chocolate (27%) and switching to less expensive toiletries (18%). This was closely followed by spending less on: meat (16%), high-end health food (13%) and premium bread or baked goods (12%).

The most popular reason for this planned spending cut is to keep up with rising living costs – true for almost half (42%) of respondents.

The research found that almost 80% of 25-34-year-olds are planning or considering cutting back their spending in 2019, compared to just 40% of those aged over 65.

London is reported to be the most saving-savvy region (62%) followed by the South East (47%) and the North East (47%). Wales has the smallest proportion (32%) of people planning to cut back on their spending.

Guy Moreve, Chief Marketing Officer at Paymentsense, said: “Although it is common for people to make plans in the New Year, our study reveals that instead of aspirational health or lifestyle goals many UK consumers are increasingly concerned about just keeping up as living costs climb more quickly than salaries. Many of the 70,000 small businesses we work with across the UK understand that shoppers are struggling to balance their monthly budgets at this time of year, and have been adapting with special offers, loyalty schemes and more advanced point of sale techniques.

“Another growing trend is ethical consumption, and over 2018 we saw increased awareness and attention to environmentally friendly lifestyle habits such as veganism and sustainable fashion. We feel that this coming year will see continued movement in this area, as more people adopt ethical attitudes. Small retailers should see this as an opportunity to review different aspects of their offering, and their suppliers, to look at what can be improved to tap into this growing consumer sensitivity.”