A Look at the Digital-First 2020 Holiday Season
Like much of everything in 2020, the holiday shopping season is expected to look quite different than prior years — and it extends way beyond just wearing a mask to the mall.
Every year, Shopkick surveys U.S. consumers to learn more about their holiday shopping plans. This time around, amidst a global pandemic, findings show that consumers’ attitudes, behaviors and purchasing habits continue to evolve.
We surveyed nearly 17,000 consumers to uncover where they’ll shop, how much they plan to spend, and how they think the current health and economic crises will impact their behaviors. Here’s what we learned.
Shoppers Will Click to Cross Off Their Holiday Lists
E-commerce has grown exponentially due to retail closures and social distancing orders, so it’s no surprise that holiday shoppers will find the channel especially convenient this season. Most (67 percent) expect to purchase online to avoid crowds and exposure to COVID-19, a 16 percent increase compared to 2019.
With more shoppers than ever heading online this holiday season, Amazon.com is likely to come out on top. In fact, 65 percent of consumers plan to purchase from the online retailer, followed by big-box sites like Target.com and Walmart.com (18 percent), and department store sites like Macys.com and Kohls.com (6 percent). Not to mention, Amazon’s two-day Prime Day event was postponed from its usual spot in July until October, putting even more pressure on competitors as the holiday season closes in.
Online marketplaces such as Etsy (56 percent) and eBay (43 percent) will also be popular among this year’s holiday revelers, as they present an opportunity to support small business sellers during these difficult economic times, as well as providing a place to find unique and handmade gifts.
Consumers Expect Free Perks
Last year, low prices (42 percent) proved the most important incentive for shoppers. However, with more shoppers turning online this year, most (54 percent compared to 31 percent in 2019) are looking for free shipping, while only 24 percent say low prices are most important.
In addition to free shipping, shoppers also want the convenience of being able to buy online and pick up in-store (BOPIS) or at the curb (BOPAC). Nearly half (44 percent) plan to take advantage of these options when available. In addition to the extra level of convenience, these kinds of transactions allow for a completely contactless experience, an essential service as consumers aim to socially distance and avoid exposure to others altogether.
While a focus on Instagram-worthy setups may have driven consumers into stores last year, retailers should double-down on all aspects of the online experience to entice this year’s holiday shoppers. Keeping online fulfillment centers stocked, offering free shipping as well as BOPIS and/or BOPAC, investing in real-time inventory data to inform online shoppers of out-of-stock items, and creating an overall seamless online shopping experience will influence which retailers come out as winners on the other side of this unprecedented shopping season.
David Fisch is the general manager of Shopkick, a Trax company, and a leading shopping rewards app bringing moments of joy to everyday shopping — both online and offline.
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Dave Fisch is the General Manager of Shopkick, a Trax company, and a leading shopping rewards app, bringing moments of joy to everyday shopping - both on- and off-line. For brands and retailers, Shopkick provides high consumer engagement along the entire path to purchase. The company’s unique pay for performance model has been proven to deliver high ROI, driving incremental traffic, product engagement, and sales. Some of its leading brand and retail partners include Auntie Anne's, Barilla, Brighton, eBay, GE, Kellogg's, TJ Maxx, Unilever, among others.
Shopkick is available for free on iPhone from the App Store and for Android from Google Play. For more information, please visit www.shopkick.com.