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Forget the Mall, Shoppers are on the Daily Deal Sites


Retailers trying to reach consumers this holiday season should be looking for them online, a new study shows.

According to consumer research from Parks Associates, more than two-thirds of consumers checked emails from retailers, manufacturers or daily deal services at least once in the last month, making that mode of marketing more popular than ads in newspapers.

Shoppers visited daily deal websites an average of 10 times per month, the study found. That tally ranks second only to consumers' consumption of email offers, which they read an average of 17 times per month. By comparison, those consulting newspapers for deals did so only six times per month.

"Consumers are actively searching for daily deals online, and retailers need to extend their presence beyond their own websites," said Tricia Parks, chief executive officer of Parks Associates. "Daily deal websites such as Groupon or Living Social are great mediums for reaching consumers, grabbing more consumers even than Facebook.”

When it comes to what consumers are buying, the study shows electronics purchases again are on the rise this holiday season.

After a steep decline in 2010 holiday sales, the "Consumer Decision Process: Holiday Intentions" study found sales of consumer electronics are expected to rebound this year to near-2009 levels.

Overall, nearly half of all homes with broadband access intend to purchase at least one electronic device before the end of the year, up from 38 percent in 2010.

"While retailers are relieved to see consumers returning to the marketplace this holiday season, they must offer deep discounts and spawn creative marketing to capture the increasingly budget-conscious American shopper," Parks said.

The study was based on surveys of 2,500 U.S. consumers who have broadband access.


Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based freelance writer who has nearly 15 years experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.