Traditionally the online Christmas shopping day is Cyber Monday – a good replacement for the hectic queuing and stampeding of Black Monday on the high street, but it looks like the Irish are leaving it even nearer the day – eBay Ireland predicts that the highest volume of traffic will hit this coming Sunday.
“Over the past two years, the most significant spike in activity has taken place on the first Sunday in December, this looks set to continue in 2008 with Sunday the 7th predicted to be our busiest day,” said Eamonn Galvin, head of product for eBay.ie.
The number of purchases is expected to grow by 30pc, in comparison to an average shopping day on eBay.
But what are we flocking to eBay.ie for exactly? All but one of the top-ten most searched for products on eBay are sheer gadgetry, with the old reliable Apple iPod coming in at No 1 as the most searched – no surprise, given that a range of new models were introduced not long ago.
Gaming consoles are also a big hit, with the Playstation 3, PSP, Nintendo DS and Wii and Xbox 360 coming in at 2, 3, 4, 6 and 8 respectively.
In case you were wondering, the fifth most popular search is for Abercrombie and Fitch clothing – the kind UCD students bring back after their J1 summer.
Other than gaming, shoppers still seem to have a strong desire for the iPhone, as well as going on the hunt for new or previously owned laptops and GPS devices, while a quick scan shows that Macbooks and photography accessories are among the most-watched listed items on ebay.ie.
We’re not just buying though, because eBay is noticing the rise of a new community: eBayers selling their wares to cover the cost of Christmas – certainly not common two years ago or maybe even last year, but now that everyone is being affected by a badly structured world economy (I refuse to use the credit-crunch euphemism), we are seeing a more savvy breed of online shopper.
But are we actually getting value for money? The average 8GB iPod nano sells for €113.61 on eBay, in comparison to the €139 price tag in the shops, but make sure you are getting the 4th generation one – there is a big mix of both on eBay.ie, and the lower average price may be down to a lack of distinction between the newer and older model.
On the other hand, the average digital camcorder is selling for €107.62 – well worth a second look – and if you are still stuck for ideas, head to giftfinder.ebay.com for plenty of suggestions.
By Marie Boran