Shopping is part of the national consciousness. It’s an activity we all undertake, whether recreationally or out of necessity, and is constantly evolving. For retailers and brand marketers, this poses an ongoing challenge of meeting changing consumer demands and expectations.

Retail’s golden quarter, the three-month build up to Christmas is now behind us, and companies are announcing how they fared during the industry’s most important period. Retailers have started to entice shoppers from as early as October with pre-sales discounts, weekend deals and early-bird offers. With deals now continuing right through to the new year, Black Friday has given rise to a golden quarter of retail sales.

To fully understand what this prolonged sales period means to modern shoppers, Criteo surveyed 2,050 consumers from across the United Kingdom to understand how and why they are shopping today. To analyse the findings, Dr Nick Gadsby, a Commercial Semiotician and a lecturer in Cultural Anthropology – as well as founder of The Answer – offered a psychological examination of the answers.