Insider Intelligence delivers leading-edge research to clients in a variety of forms, including full-length reports and data visualizations to equip you with actionable takeaways for better business decisions.
In-depth analysis, benchmarks and shorter spotlights on digital trends.
Learn More
Interactive projections with 10k+ metrics on market trends, & consumer behavior.
Learn More
Proprietary data and over 3,000 third-party sources about the most important topics.
Learn More
Industry KPIs
Industry benchmarks for the most important KPIs in digital marketing, advertising, retail and ecommerce.
Learn More
Client-only email newsletters with analysis and takeaways from the daily news.
Learn More
Analyst Access Program
Exclusive time with the thought leaders who craft our research.
Learn More

About Insider Intelligence

Our goal at Insider Intelligence is to unlock digital opportunities for our clients with the world’s most trusted forecasts, analysis, and benchmarks. Spanning five core coverage areas and dozens of industries, our research on digital transformation is exhaustive.
Our Story
Learn more about our mission and how Insider Intelligence came to be.
Learn More
Rigorous proprietary data vetting strips biases and produces superior insights.
Learn More
Our People
Take a look into our corporate culture and view our open roles.
Join the Team
Contact Us
Speak to a member of our team to learn more about Insider Intelligence.
Contact Us
See our latest press releases, news articles or download our press kit.
Learn More
Advertising & Sponsorship Opportunities
Reach an engaged audience of decision-makers.
Learn More
Browse our upcoming and past events, recent podcasts, and other featured resources.
Learn More
Tune in to eMarketer's daily, weekly, and monthly podcasts.
Learn More

UK Consumers Across Income Brackets

What the Pandemic Meant for Tech, Media, and Spending Habits

About This Report
The pandemic super-charged digital habits in the UK, particularly among higher-income groups. These people are also in a better place financially as pandemic restrictions lift, but there’s pent-up desire to spend across all income brackets.
Table of Contents

Executive Summary

The pandemic increased digital engagement while putting household finances under pressure across all income brackets. However, affluents saw a particular digital bump, while their cash concerns weren’t quite as pronounced.

How big are the different income categories in the UK?

There are 15.2 million low-income individuals in the UK earning less that £20,000 ($25,527) per year and a further 15.5 million at the other end of the scale earning more than £45,000 ($57,435). In the more populous middle-income group, there are 35.0 million people.

How do different income groups engage with tech and media?

Higher-income individuals have more devices and tend to use them more. As a result, their time spent online outstrips that of low-income individuals. Those with fewer devices tend to rely on mobile as their main conduit to getting online. And while low-income individuals have tended to consume less digital media in general, the pandemic did give their time spent a bump.

How has consumer financial health affected spending habits?

Average disposable income dipped during the pandemic, but thanks in large part to government initiatives to protect employment, current income levels are broadly in line with pre-pandemic figures. And while those on lower incomes struggled to save, there’s still evidence of pent-up desire to spend. There’s greater intention to spend on big-ticket items among affluents, though.

WHAT’S IN THIS REPORT? This report assesses the digital habits of people in different income brackets in the UK. It also examines how the pandemic affected their financial health and how spending patterns changed as a result.

KEY STAT: The pandemic led to a 3.2% drop in UK household and gross disposable income, to £369.9 billion ($472.1 billion) in Q2 2020, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). However, the dip in consumption expenditure was far deeper, falling 20.8% to £277.2 billion ($353.8 billion) in the same period.

Here’s what’s in the full report


Exportable files for easy reading, analysis and sharing.


Reliable data in simple displays for presentations and quick decision making.

3expert perspectives

Insights from industry and company leaders.

    Table of Contents

    1. Executive Summary
    2. Demographic Data: Classifications and Market Sizing
    3. Technology and Media Use: More Money Means More Devices and More Engagement
    1. Spending Behaviors: There’s a Pent-Up Desire to Spend, Particularly Among Affluents
    2. Key Takeaways
    3. Insider Intelligence Interviews
    1. Read Next
    2. Sources
    3. Media Gallery

    Charts in This Report

    Interviewed for This Report

    Jonny Whitehead
    Skyrise Intelligence
    Board Director
    Interviewed July 13, 2021
    Richard Thomas
    Future plc
    Insight Director
    Interviewed July 15, 2021
    Sarah Rew
    Senior Director, Global Marketing
    Interviewed July 20, 2021


    Bill Fisher


    Angela Kim
    Senior Researcher
    Victoria Petrock
    Principal Analyst
    Debra Aho Williamson
    Principal Analyst
    Already have a subscription?Sign In

    Access All Charts and Data

    Gain access to reliable data presented in clear and intelligible displays for quick understanding and decision making on the most important topics related to your industry

    Become a Client