As this past Christmas is quickly becoming a memory it’s interesting to look back on the top holiday shopping trends for the year. While it is true that the traditional brick and mortar stores had a really good season with strong sales beginning over the Black Friday weekend, it’s the online retailers who really got a boost this holiday. How much of a boost? Try 15% more shoppers then last year. This meant that a record $1.25 billion was spent on Cyber Monday alone.
One of the things that enticed these online shoppers was another trend for the holiday season which was free shipping. Nine out of ten online retailers offered free shipping on most of their orders. It was only those procrastinators who waited until the last minute that had to pay extra for shipping.
Speaking of procrastinators, that was also one of the top holiday shopping trends for 2011. By some estimates up to one quarter of all holiday shoppers didn’t even start their shopping until at least one week before Christmas. In some cases those shoppers turned out to be the smart ones because the closer it came to December 24 the more prices were slashed. Then there was the self-gifting trend. It turns out that six in 10 shoppers said they were also buying gifts for themselves. And why not? They were good all year saving money weren’t they?
As for the big winner in online retailing that prize has to once again go to Amazon. They took the holiday shopping season very seriously by offering Black Friday deals 24 days before the actual Black Friday. They also encouraged most of their customers to go shopping for an item in the store then come back to Amazon and buy it at a reduced price. That’s just what many holiday shoppers did.
Of course, another major trend for this and every other holiday season is the gift returning. This makes shopping the day after Christmas almost as crazy as the day after Thanksgiving. Even though there might be as much as $47 billion of returns this year that’s not necessarily bad news for the economy. Most of those returns end up being in store credit which means more products will end up being sold. As for the gift, cards they keep the spending for months to come which is another great boost to the economy.
Beyond studying the shopping trends, the other tradition for the holiday is actually taking down all the holiday decorations. Even if you wait until after New Year’s you want to make sure to get that Christmas tree out of the house as quickly as possible before it becomes too dried up. You’ll need to make arrangements with Sacramento’s top Junk Hauling team – Junk King – to take away your Christmas tree. But don’t just use them for the Christmas tree; let them take away all your big boxes, bags of gift wrapping, and any other pieces of junk you want to toss out!