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Deloitte Study: Retailers Can Expect Jolly Holiday Shopping Season

Shoppers expected to spend nearly $1,500 per household

New York, October 22, 2019

Key takeaways

  • Shoppers are expected to spend $1,496 per household during the holiday season this year.
  • The top 20% of spenders account for 60% of total dollars people plan to spend during the holiday season.
  • The bulk of holiday spending ($596) will go to experiences and celebrations—including entertaining at home, socializing away from home, travel, and restaurants.
  • Consumers of all age groups likely to rely more on Cyber Monday than Black Friday.
  • People surveyed expect to spend 59% of their holiday budget online, compared with 36% in-store.
  • Promotions will influence 81% of consumers this holiday season.

Why this matters
For the 34th year, Deloitte commissioned a national survey of 4,410 consumers to better understand spending for the upcoming holiday season. Conducted online, September 6-13, by an independent research company, the survey provides key insights into consumer behavior and what retailers can expect from shoppers as they tackle their holiday shopping.

Experiences lead the charge when it comes to holiday shopping

  • Consumers are expected to spend nearly $400 per household on social activities this holiday season, accounting for more than one-fourth of household holiday spending.
  • Approximately two-thirds of consumers (66%) will allocate spending to experiences.
  • More than half of surveyed consumers (59%) plan on dining out during the holiday season. 

Media contacts:

Anisha Sharma
Public Relations
Deloitte Services LP
+1 201 290 9119

Courtney B. Smith
Public Relations
Deloitte Services LP
+1 571 236 1847

Read the survey findings on Deloitte insights.

Every year respondents tell us that the most important factor is discounts. This year that tops out with not just promotions, but also free shipping. What is most fascinating is that we are also seeing an increase in the number of people who are using their phones not just to research products and discounts, but to ultimately make purchases. In fact, 70% of smartphone users said they will use their phone to make a purchase this holiday season.

Rod Sides, vice chairman, Deloitte LLP,
and U.S. leader, retail, wholesale and distribution

High spenders to account for a majority of total holiday spending

  • These high spenders (households spending more than $2,000) will likely make up 60% of total holiday spend and account for 20% of holiday shoppers.
  • Nearly 70% of high spenders will start shopping before Thanksgiving Day.

Promotions and price: Shoppers want free shipping and are willing to wait

  • Free shipping is more important to shoppers (85%) than fast shipping (15%).
  • Most of those who choose “fast” (68%) expect no more than 2 days.
  • The majority of those who opt for free shipping (67%) are willing to wait 3-7 days.

Shoppers and the economy

  • Most (78%) expect to spend the same or more than last year’s holiday season, despite their less optimistic outlook for the economy in 2020.
  • Forty-four percent expect the economy to weaken next year, up from 27% compared to last year’s survey.

For additional information:

View Deloitte’s annual “Holiday Survey” for the complete report. Connect with us on Twitter at @DeloitteCB or on LinkedIn @RodSides.

About the Center
Deloitte Insights Consumer Industry Center (the “Center”) provides a forum for innovation, thought leadership, groundbreaking research, and industry collaboration to help companies solve the most complex industry challenges.

Technology is changing at a rapid pace, and so are consumers. How will these changes impact the way our clients do business in the future? The Center provides premiere insights based on primary research on the most prevalent issues facing the Consumer industry to help our clients run effectively and achieve superior business results.

The Center is your trusted source for information on leading trends and research that connect insights, issues, and solutions for Deloitte’s four consumer sectors: automotive; consumer products; retail, wholesale and distribution; and transportation, hospitality and services.

About Deloitte
Deloitte provides industry-leading audit, consulting, tax and advisory services to many of the world’s most admired brands, including nearly 90% of the Fortune 500® and more than 5,000 private and middle market companies. Our people work across the industry sectors that drive and shape today’s marketplace—delivering measurable and lasting results that help reinforce public trust in our capital markets, inspire clients to see challenges as opportunities to transform and thrive, and help lead the way toward a stronger economy and a healthy society. Deloitte is proud to be part of the largest global professional services network serving our clients in the markets that are most important to them. Our network of member firms spans more than 150 countries and territories. Learn how Deloitte’s more than 312,000 people worldwide make an impact that matters at www.deloitte.com.

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