Compete Blog: Tracking Early Holiday Shoppers
By Debra Miller Arbesman
Through a special arrangement, presented here for
discussion is a summary of a current article from the Compete Blog.
Compete Inc. is a web analytics company that focuses on understanding how consumers
use the internet.
Slowly but surely, consumers are working their way through
their holiday shopping list. The newest Compete Holiday Insights survey finds
that as of Oct. 24, 54 percent of consumers surveyed had started their holiday
shopping for the year and 23 percent had completed more than a quarter of their
total shopping, up from 50 percent and 16 percent, respectively, two weeks
ago. Six percent indicated they had completed all their holiday shopping by
Along with the increased shopping activity came increased spending.
Offline spending on holiday items climbed 102 percent for an average of $258
from $128 in the two-weeks ended Oct. 24 prior. Online spending increased 39
percent to $142 on average versus $102 two-weeks prior.
Most categories saw
a lift in purchase activity relative to two-weeks prior. Asked what products
they bought as part of their holiday shopping during the week of Oct. 18-24,
46 percent of shoppers purchased clothing and shoes, up 11 percentage points
from the Oct. 3 to 10 period.
Toys and games ranked a close second with 44
percent, up nine percentage points. Gift cards have become a popular gift item,
with 36 percent of shoppers opting for these stocking stuffers, up from just
6 percent. In other categories, book purchases increased to 29 percent from
24 percent and movies/video games grew to 26 percent from 21 percent. Two categories
saw declines: electronics, 22 percent versus 24 percent; and jewelry/electronics,
14 percent to 19 percent.
Asked which retailers they purchased online from during
the period as part of their holiday shopping, Amazon was far and away the most
mentioned at 53 percent. That was followed by Ebay.com, 18 percent; Walmart.com
and Target.com, both at 12 percent; Overstock.com, nine percent; and Best Buy
and Sears, both at five percent; Macy’s, four percent; JCPenney.com and ToysRus.com,
both three percent; and Kohls.com and Homedepot.com, both at two percent.
findings come as numerous articles have come out showing that at least some
holiday sales are coming out well before Black Friday.
Discussion Questions: Should retailers be promoting holiday sales well before
the traditional Black Friday start of the holiday shopping period? Are retailers
doing enough to capitalize on early holiday shoppers?
- Compete Holiday Insights 2010 – Compete Blog
- “Black Friday” Coming Early This Year – CBS News
- Retailers Offering Deep Discounts Before Black Friday – KWCH