Holiday Spending Set to Break Records

BY Adam Ambro
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With less than three months left in the year, the holiday season is well underway. While many consumers are getting their Halloween decorations just right, they’re also planning for a massive spending increase from the last holiday season. Coming after a year of shutdowns and social distancing, consumers are headed back into stores and are ready to spend. According to a new Roku and Harris Poll, one in three holiday shoppers expects to increase their spending this holiday season, the highest number since the survey’s creation.

What’s driving the spending boom?

The Roku and Harris poll revealed a shared expectation of economic improvement in the year ahead, with 72% of holiday consumers expressing confidence that the economy will improve in the next 12 months. This optimism is fueling shopper intent to spend what could be record amounts of money in 2021. 36% of holiday shoppers plan on spending more this year, a significant increase from the past three years and the highest number reported since 2018.

Furthermore, 39% of streaming holiday shoppers, those who have streamed content in the last three months, plan to spend more in 2021, a major increase from 2020. The report also finds consumers expect to spend a record $937 on holiday purchases, which is a 5% increase year-over-year.

Individual spending could hit record levels this holiday season as consumers report significant growth in their holiday spending plans,” said Dan Robbins, Vice President of Ad Marketing and Partner Solutions at Roku. “As consumers prepare to spend more, they are also changing how they approach gift giving and how media consumption influences their purchasing decisions. Nearly half of holiday shoppers said they shopped for a product after seeing a TV streaming ad. With one out of three holiday shoppers unreachable on traditional pay TV, marketers need to buy TV advertising where consumers now watch TV to win them over this holiday.”

Where will consumers shop?

Consumers have been shopping early and often this year, and they’re shopping both online and in-​person. The Roku and Harris survey revealed that 43% of shoppers plan to shop in-​store this Black Friday and Cyber Monday. This marks an 11% increase from 2020, however, online shopping remains dominant, with the majority of shoppers, 57%, planning to do most of their shopping online.

This is a great opportunity for your advertisers to diversify their advertising strategies, focusing both on in-​store and digital campaigns. Additionally, with access to AdMall’s AudienceSCAN, powered by SalesFuel, you can access profiles on both Black Friday and Cyber Monday shoppers. Specifically, you can point out the 2021 purchase intent data for both audiences, showing your advertiser that 24.5% of US adults purchased something online on Cyber Monday last year and 20.2% of US adults went shopping in stores (not online) on Black Friday last year.

No matter what approach your advertiser is interested in, one thing is clear, they must be advertising right now. With consumers poised to open their wallets in a big year, your clients can’t afford to miss this opportunity to sell more. Chain Store Age writes that sales are forecast to increase 10% to 13% this holiday season over last, which would make this the strongest holiday period since 1999, according to global consulting firm AlixPartner’s 2021 US Retail Holiday-​Outlook Survey.

Our message to retailers is: ‘This holiday season is yours to lose,’” said Joel Bines global co-​leader of the retail practice at AlixPartners and a managing director at the firm. “There’s unprecedented pent-​up demand out there, consumers have lots of money in their pockets, in part due to recent government programs, and even the rise of the delta variant, while certainly concerning, doesn’t seem poised to put a damper on things, thanks in part to the big increases in online shopping this past year.”

Photo by RODNAE Productions from Pexels