Several research shops have published their holiday-spending predictions for the upcoming season.  The researchers are holidaygiftskidemphasizing the shortened time frame between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year. Consumers are well  aware of the compressed season and are already shopping. The American Express Spending & Saving Tracker has published a particularly optimistic forecast and based on their numbers, marketers should be offering their best deals now to capture their share of the spending.

About 25% of consumers will be done shopping by December 1. The gift givers surveyed by AMEX reported their plans to spend $1,260 in 2013  which is $400 more than last year.  This survey also hints at a change in consumer behavior. About 55% of consumers will be shopping online on Cyber Monday. Slightly fewer, 52%, will brave the crowds on Black Friday between midnight and 7:00 a.m. The Black Friday shoppers expect to shell out $611 in their 7-hour buying spree.

Consumers will visit the following stores during their holiday trips (note that all of these numbers are higher than they were last year):

  • Superstores 66%
  • Department stores 62%
  • Large electronic stores 45%
  • Small businesses 38%
  • Mainstream retail stores 36%

These consumers will be turning to their mobile devices to make purchases (51%), look for good ideas (25%), and compare prices  by using barcode scanning apps (20%).

The most popular gifts this season will range from gift cards (61%) to apparel and accessories (59%) and toys and games (51%). About 34% of consumers also say they’ll be purchasing electronics.

Kids and spouses will benefit most from consumer generosity. But the goodwill doesn’t stop there. For the 67% of consumers who buy pet gifts, average spending will be $178. And 75% of consumers also expect to donate to a charity.

Are you running your best ad campaigns in traditional and digital media now to benefit from consumer spending?