Newtownabbey officially Northern Ireland’s online shopping hotspot

The cyber shopping hotspots.

The cyber shopping hotspots.

Local bargain hunters top the list of Northern Ireland’s most prolific shoppers in this year’s biggest cyber shopping event over Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Figures released by Royal Mail show the top five towns and cities in Northern Ireland where shoppers made the most online purchases in the week leading up to Black Friday and extending to Cyber Monday 2016.

The top five Northern Ireland online shopping hotspots based on deliveries per address are: Newtownabbey, Londonderry, Newry, Armagh and Coleraine.

Black Friday, originally a one day promotional sales event, is now widely regarded as the start of Christmas shopping season in the UK. This year a number of retailers extended their seasonal offers over a period of a week, and in some cases two weeks.

Research from Royal Mail into consumers’ shopping habits ahead of the Black Friday shopping event found that 70 per cent of shoppers expected to spend between one and three hours shopping online. One in five expected to do all their Black Friday shopping online and just over three in five saw the sales event as a chance to do their Christmas shopping.

The top five online shopping hotspots are based on analysis of parcels accepted into the Royal Mail network between Monday, November 21 and Tuesday, November 29. Items were accepted from online retailers and ecommerce businesses for delivery via the Royal Mail Tracked 24 and Royal Mail Tracked 48 services.

Online purchases made on Black Friday, Cyber Monday and beyond will continue to be distributed by retailers and delivered by Royal Mail over the coming days.

Royal Mail has opened nine dedicated parcel sort centres and recruited an additional 19,000 temporary staff to support its Christmas operation including an additional 500 staff in Northern Ireland.