Retailers should brace themselves for a tsunami of last-minute shoppers this holiday season, new survey data show. Some think last-minute shopping is fun and some are procrastinating, but far more are holding off on buying because they think they will get the best discounts that way.
Nearly half (41 percent) of 13,000 U.S. online shoppers surveyed in a survey conducted by online shopping site PriceGrabber said they plan to shop between Dec. 21 and Dec. 24 for holiday gifts.
When those consumers were asked to select all the reasons why, 43 percent said they believe the best discounts can be found during this time period. Another 43 percent indicated they are busy and unable to finish their shopping earlier, 26 percent admitted to procrastinating, 22 percent believe it is fun to do last-minute shopping, and 10 percent are waiting for a year-end work bonus to begin shopping.
"After observing the increase in activity and sales of the Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping season this year, we expect to see a significant percentage of consumers seeking to prompt retailers to offer additional savings throughout December," said Graham Jones, general manager of PriceGrabber. "Savvy shoppers saw retailers rolling out discounts as early as the week before Thanksgiving this year, and they are staying on top of last-minute incentives that are certainly on the horizon in the coming weeks."
Last-minute shoppers plan on buying a mix of high- and low-price-point gifts (53 percent), the survey found, while 31 percent will only buy small-ticket items (under $100). One out of ten will purchase all the holiday gifts on their list at the last minute and 6 percent will buy only big-ticket items(over $100).
More men than women will delay their holiday shopping until the New Year, the survey found. When asked to select all the reasons why, 68 percent said that they believe sale prices are best in January, 27 percent plan to use gift money received during the holiday period, 24 percent simply prefer shopping in January, and 11 percent plan to wait for a year-end work bonus to make purchases.
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Reach BusinessNewsDaily senior writer Ned Smith at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @nedbsmith.