The holiday shopping season kicks off well before Halloween, according to PayPal – and that’s nothing new, the eBay unit says. For the third consecutive year, the U.S. holiday shopping season kicked off on September 30th.
How does it know? “Since $1 in every $6 of ecommerce flows through PayPal, we have a unique perspective and can identify shopping trends before others in the industry,” it brags.
Anuj Nayar, Senior Director of Global Initiatives at PayPal, said an analysis of its data indicates the shopping season began sometime between 6 – 7 pm PDT on September 30. “We’ve noticed that on the day the shopping season begins, there’s typically a big spike in payment transactions. For example, last year, payment transactions nationwide grew by 62.81% on September 30th.”
The earlier start to the holiday shopping season, known as “holiday creep,” means Christmas trees and other holiday decorations are seen in retail stores before Thanksgiving and, in some cases, even before Halloween (October 31). Pointing to a study that found 12% of millennials (ages 18 to 29) said they either “like” or “love” early holiday merchandising, Nayer said he wasn’t surprised by the trend given that approximately 25% of PayPal customers fall into the millennial age range.
Nayer also revealed that October 1st was PayPal’s largest mobile shopping day in the U.S. this year, with peak shopping occurring between 11 am to 1 pm PT. “This year, the total payment volume on mobile (mTPV) spiked on September 30 and October 1, representing a 26.1% and 27.4% increase over the average daily mTPV for 2014. This is up from a 15.4% and 20.4% increase over the average daily mTPV for 2013 over those two days.”