Even though Black Friday is still four months away, new research shows a number of shoppers are well into their Christmas shopping.
Based on a survey conducted for CouponCabin, 13 percent of U.S. consumers have already started shopping for the 2012 holiday season. Even more – 17 percent – plan to take advantage of Christmas in July sales.
Of the 2,209 adult consumers participating in the survey, 11 percent said they shop year-round for holiday gifts.
The study shows shoppers with young kids are the most likely to start their Christmas spending sooner rather than later. Nearly a quarter of the survey participants who have children younger than 6 said they have already done at least some shopping for the upcoming holiday season, and 36 percent of those parents said they planned to do at least some holiday shopping during this month's Christmas in July sales.
"Every year we see holiday shoppers getting a jump-start earlier and earlier," said Jackie Warrick, president and chief savings officer at CouponCabin.com. "For many families, planning ahead for holiday shopping is the best option, as it gives them plenty of time to buy gifts and to find the lowest prices possible."
Of those who have started their shopping, 15 percent said they have bought most of their presents, and 4 percent said they are completely finished.
The reasons for getting a jump-start on holiday shopping are based on time and money. Of those who shop for holiday presents at least eight months in advance – 14 percent overall – more than half said they do so because that's when they'll find the best deals. Many also agreed that it gives them time to find the perfect gift and that they are too busy during the holidays to shop.
Those who haven't started their Christmas shopping yet are far from alone, however. The survey found that 36 percent won't start on their holiday lists until September, and an additional 21 percent said they'll wait until November.