No time like the present. Nielsen has released updated data regarding consumer behavior geared toward the upcoming holiday season. It found that Millennials are the most eager of consumers — 34 percent of Canadian Millennials and 27 percent of U.S. Millennials said they’ve already started their shopping.
“When we look across consumer segments, an area that jumps out Millennials. They’re some of the earliest adopters of e-commerce and they’re also more likely to both shop earlier than the average shopper and shop later,” Jordan Rost, vice president of consumer insights at Nielsen. “They’re using digital platforms to, on the one hand, get ahead of the holiday season, but maybe catch up quick if they forgot to buy a gift for someone.”
According to a recent study conducted by the insight and analytics firm, 49 percent of Americans plan to start their holiday shopping the evening of Thanksgiving Day. This isn’t to count out Black Friday or Cyber Monday, but brands might consider early-bird specials for the proactive customer set.
“We’ve run research for the last five years,” Rost said. “We’re finding that 26 percent of shoppers will have started their shopping this year by the time October hits. We’re well under way on holiday shopping.”
What’s more, the research found that more consumers will be shopping on Black Friday than the last two years. According to the research, 61 percent of U.S. shoppers will shop on Black Friday — up from 54 percent in 2016 and 50 percent in 2015, respectively.
U.S. consumers aren’t expected to solely shop online, either. “One-third of Americans are planning to turn out for Black Friday for the first time ever,” Rost continued. “Lots of new shoppers will come to stores — I think a lot of it is how do we get into the store and get that store experience that complements what we’re able to buy online as well throughout the rest of the holiday season.”
And while Black Friday shopping is on the rise, Cyber Monday spending intentions have fallen, likely due to the ongoing omnichannel integration by retailers and brands. Sixty-one percent of U.S. consumers plan to shop on Cyber Monday — down two percent from 2016. Sixty percent of U.S. shoppers planned to spend on Cyber Monday in 2015.
In Nielsen’s latest “Total Consumer Report,” 43 percent of consumers named online shopping as more efficient and convenient than visiting a brick-and-mortar, which points to huge opportunities for online retailers and well-oiled e-commerce counterparts of larger brands and retailers.
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