Many Consumers Still Shopping For Holiday Gifts; Half Planned to Complete Purchases Online

December 20, 2013

This article is included in these additional categories:

Digital | Mobile Phone | Retail & E-Commerce | Tablet

NRF-Final-Holiday-Shopping-Destinations-Dec2013Fewer than 1 in 10 consumers had finished their holiday shopping as of December 9th, and almost half were expecting to not buy their last holiday gift until this weekend or later, according to survey results from the NRF. E-commerce spending has already been seeing strong growth so far this holiday season, per comScore, and the NRF study provides reason to believe that the robust e-commerce figures could continue: half of the survey respondents planned to finish their shopping online. That’s the highest percentage in the history of the NRF survey, and makes online the primary destination for shoppers wrapping up their purchases, ahead of department stores (45.6%), discount stores (37.4%), electronics stores (24.1%) and clothing or accessories stories (23.6%).

Given that the survey ended December 9, it’s possible that many of the respondents planning to shop online would have done so by Free Shipping Day (Wednesday, December 18) to guarantee that their gifts arrived by Christmas Eve and to avoid more expensive shipping. Still, comScore has observed a big increase in weekend shopping online this year, so it will be interesting to see if that holds up this final weekend before Christmas. According to new survey results from PriceGrabber, online shoppers have been waiting until this month to make their purchases as this is when they expect the biggest discounts. In fact, 51% of last-minute shoppers planned to shop on “Super Saturday,” the last Saturday before Christmas.

In other results from the NRF survey:

  • Half of respondents reported having bought clothing or clothing accessories, with toys (38.7%) and books, CDs, DVDs, videos or video games (38.4%) also popular;
  • A plurality 41.9% of respondents most often used debit cards or check cards to buy those gifts;
  • One-third of tablet owners planned to make a purchase on their device, as did 1 in 5 smartphone owners; and
  • 1 in 10 respondents planned to shop online on Christmas Day.

About the Data: The NRF survey was conducted among 6,324 adults from December 2-9, 2013.

Conducted from Dec. 2 to Dec. 6, 2013, the PriceGrabber survey includes responses from 3,299 U.S. online shopping consumers.

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