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Holiday Shopping 2016 Has Begun

If you’re in retail, you can’t avoid hearing about the holiday shopping season. Etsy, always a good source of tips and suggestions, has begun advising sellers to prepare. PayPal has said September 30th kicks off the shopping season. And a recent report says nearly one third of consumers already began holiday shopping before Labor Day.

Rubicon Project’s second annual Holiday Consumer Pulse Poll shows consumers are shopping earlier than ever, taking control of when, where and how they plan to spend billions of dollars on holiday gifts, according to Harry Patz, Chief Revenue Officer, Rubicon Project.

“With Americans shopping earlier and spending considerably more this year than last, retailers have a unique opportunity to target shoppers across a variety of media and platforms. The research shows that parents and millennials in particular will be two key drivers behind this year’s increase in holiday spend.”

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The survey found that 73% of respondents plan to shop online this holiday season, and more than 1 in 3 plan to shop on mobile.

And interestingly 22% of shoppers (and 28% of millennials) do not plan to shop in-store at all this year.

Here are some additional findings from the report:

  • Americans plan to spend on average $1,175 this holiday season, showcasing a 12 percent jump over last year.
  • Technology ($378) continues to be one of the largest spend areas and the biggest purchase category (36 percent) for those buying a big-ticket item.
  • While overall spend and spend per child ($495) has gone up, consumers are slightly more likely to say they prefer buying lots of smaller items rather than one big-ticket item.
  • Experiences, such as travel, sports events and shows, are the top intended spend areas with survey respondents indicating they will spend $440 on experiential gifts this season.

Rubicon Project engaged global polling firm Penn Schoen Berland to conduct 1,003 interviews among holiday shoppers in the US between August 23 – 25, 2016. You can find more information on the RubiconProject.com website.

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Ina Steiner

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. Send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.


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