For retailers hoping to bring in some final holiday sales, global payments company Klarna has optimistic news: 79% of shoppers expect to finish their holiday shopping within the final two weeks before Christmas, with 35% buying gifts the week of the holiday. With both men and women equally likely to purchase during this time, retailers across the board have an opportunity to convert more purchases.
This year’s holiday shopping is looking different to previous years, as brick-and-mortar restrictions remain in place in many states. Additionally, consumer awareness of likely delays has not proved to be a deterrent for a majority of last-minute shoppers. Even with warnings that packages may not arrive until after Christmas, 55% of those buying in the final stretch said that they would still pick to purchase online.
Nevertheless, these final days will be a critical opportunity for brick-and-mortar to recoup some sales after a challenging year. Klarna found that 64% of shoppers plan to do their last bits of holiday shopping in-store, perhaps to ensure same-day gratification. With many shoppers unable to travel further afield, this could provide an unexpected boost for local business.
“Klarna’s Last-Minute Christmas Shopping Survey has uncovered that the majority of US shoppers plan to shop in physical retail stores for last-minute gifts this year,” said David Sykes, Head of US at Klarna. “This is consistent across all age groups, including the digitally-inclined younger generations such as Gen Z and Millennials, and illustrates how valuable the in-store shopping experience is, even in today’s current climate.”
For those retailers who are relying on a final push before Christmas, gift cards should be considered as an easy option for unsure shoppers. The Klarna survey reported that 44% of last-minute shoppers plan to give gift cards or money this year; gift cards have proved popular throughout the year as a way for consumers to support brands even if they can’t buy a specific product just yet.
Clothing and apparel retailer also have reason for optimism: apparel is the most popular last-minute gift category (78%), beating out electronics (45%) and home goods (33%). Small and independent brands can also expect to see a greater proportion of younger shoppers, with 45% of Gen Z and 43% of millennials planning to purchase from small business.