Christmas gift shopping boosts the holiday retail business

Holiday Shopping Season

Holiday Shopping Season

According to Accenture’s annual holiday shopping survey, U.S. consumers prefer to spend an average of $646 on gifts this holiday season, which indicates an 11 percent increase over the $582 they planned to spend, on average, in 2012. Additionally, the Black Friday shopping has generated a lot of interest and Thanksgiving Day has emerged as an established holiday season event. Though consumers plan to spend more, they will also be on the lookout for big discounts throughout this holiday shopping season.

One in five consumers will want to spend more on gifts this year, compared to 14 percent who planned to raise their holiday spending in 2012. This year they also are more likely to exceed their holiday budget (46 percent, compared to 34 percent in 2012). However, holiday shoppers will be more interested on discounts and sales. Around 94 percent of them said that discounts will be important to their buying decisions this holiday season, up from 84 percent in 2012, and 49 percent want  three-quarters or more of their purchases will be discounted or sale items.

The annual holiday shopping survey indicates 63 percent of consumers are likely to participate in “showrooming” this holiday shopping season, physically going into a store to look for a product and then searching online for an even better price and buying online. However, a same proportion of shoppers (65 percent) also plan to participate in “webrooming,” or browsing online and then going to a store to make their purchase.

What People Are Shopping For

According to the annual holiday shopping survey:

56 percent of , holiday shoppers bought Gift cards followed by apparel (54 percent), toys (44 percent) and  electronics (27 percent), including laptops, tablets and smartphones.

21 percent plan to buy home electronics (compared to 15 percent in 2012), and 19 percent intends to buy home furnishings, such as appliances and furniture (compared to 10 percent in 2012).

Around two-thirds (67 percent) of shoppers said they will purchase between one and six gift cards this season, and one-third (33 percent) plan to spend $26-$50 on each card.

This year the most popular gift cards will be given for discount retailers (40 percent) and restaurants (34 percent) and 37 percent of consumers said they will buy their gift cards at the supermarket.

Online Shopping

Online shopping will see a 40 percent increase this holiday shopping season. 47 percent of online holiday shoppers will buy using their PCs or laptops.19 percent of consumers will make purchases through tablets and 18 percent of consumers shop through smartphones.

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Richard Meryn
Richard Meryn, Associate Editor Industry Leaders Magazine (www.industryleadersmagazine.com)

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