75% of Consumers to Shop Earlier This Holiday Season

75% of Consumers to Shop Earlier This Holiday Season

Two-thirds will spend same amount or more to try to create normalcy
Wrapping holiday gifts

While the coronavirus pandemic will put a damper on many family gatherings this holiday season, retailers may not suffer a major blow.

Three in 4 Americans are planning to shop as early as possible this holiday season, while two-thirds of consumers (66%) expect to spend either the same amount of money or more, according to new research from global savings company RetailMeNot.

Online shopping to get a boost

Three-fourths of consumers (75%) said they’d prefer to shop online this year, and 18% said they’ll avoid brick-and-mortar stores and only do their holiday shopping online. Also, more than 8 in 10 said they’ll skip the in-store doorbuster deals typically offered on Thanksgiving.

Instead, 67% said they’d buy gifts on Amazon Prime Day, which is expected to be the No. 1 shopping event in the fourth quarter, according to RetailMeNot. Amazon Prime Day will take place Oct. 13 and 14.

Though Amazon Prime Day has been held earlier in the past, it has in recent years become a rival to Black Friday and Cyber Monday when it comes to luring shoppers on the hunt for deals.

October may be the sweet spot for many shoppers, as:

  • 41% said they’ll start shopping that month or earlier
  • 39% said they’ll shop earlier than normal to avoid the hassle of out-of-stock items or experiencing shipping delays

However, some consumers are still looking forward to traditional holiday shopping days:

  • Nearly two-thirds (65%) expect to shop on Cyber Monday
  • Almost 6 in 10 (59%) expect to shop on Black Friday

Regardless of when shoppers plan to begin, they may be able to get more for their money by using credit cards that offer rewards for holiday shopping.

Electronics to be among top purchases

Consumers are also putting the finishing touches on their shopping lists.

Among respondents, 61% of consumers said they’d be buying loved ones electronics this holiday season, followed by:

  • 52% who said clothing and accessories
  • 33% who said shoes
  • 23% who said jewelry
  • 18% who said kitchen appliances

When it comes to overall spending, consumers, on average, expect to allocate:

  • $283 on kids, up from $243 last year
  • $160 on significant others, up from $157 last year
  • $63 on parents, up from $52 last year
  • $46 on siblings, up from $35 last year
  • $37 on in-laws, up from $32 last year

Methodology: RetailMeNot took its data from two surveys. The first, conducted with market research firm Kelton Global, polled 1,052 adults between Aug. 17 and 19, 2020. The second survey, conducted via polling website SurveyMonkey, polled 2,360 consumers in August 2020.

Tamara E. Holmes

Tamara E. Holmes is a Washington, DC-based writer who covers personal finance, entrepreneurship and careers.