Published On: Wed, Nov 30th, 2016

50% of American Consumers Plan to Shop Online This Holiday Season

Just ahead of Black Friday, the unofficial kickoff point of the winter holiday shopping season, news reports indicate that about half of all holiday purchases will be made online. For e-commerce business owners, the stakes are as high as they’ve ever been. With millions of consumers expected to purchase holiday presents online this year, the estimated uptick in business could result in billions in additional revenue, allowing both big box e-commerce stores and lesser known companies to take the lion’s share of profits.

For companies just beginning to set up their e-commerce stories, now is the time to look at High Risk Pay to apply for merchant accounts for easy customer processing. A lot of people are expected to complete the majority of their holiday season shopping online, and they will mainly be participating on only a few critical days.

Which E-Commerce Stores Will Do Best?

Black Friday used to be the singularly biggest shopping day of the year. Shortly after the introduction of Cyber Monday, shoppers began to accept the idea of getting great holiday deals from the comfort of their homes. With Cyber Monday again being ramped up as the most profitable and popular holiday season shopping date, consumers will be bypassing brick and mortar stores and Black Friday in favor of having the chance to get better savings just a few days later. E-commerce stores with the biggest online presences will do best, with traditional retailers being most popular.  

photo/ Manuel Alejandro Leon via Pixabay

photo/ Manuel Alejandro Leon via Pixabay

What Online Holiday Season Shoppers Are Looking For

What online holiday season shoppers will be looking for this year is the same thing that got them moving away from brick stores in the first place – discounts. And while holiday season sales are both widespread and heavily promoted, consumers will be measuring other factors before they make their purchases. It may be easy to purchase goods online due to more e-commerce stores getting approved for merchant accounts and the integration of multiple payment processors, but shoppers are becoming more cautious when revealing their billing information. For this reason alone, it is expected that online consumers will be making more of their purchases with highly recognizable big box e-commerce stores than anywhere else. This doesn’t mean that smaller e-commerce brands won’t also be making record level profits this year, but it does reveal that major retailers are still most popular with consumers.

How Will the 2016 Holiday Shopping Season Affect Future Trends?

Consumers have already shown that they indeed prefer to do their holiday shopping online, but they haven’t abandoned brick and mortar stores. While most might assume that shoppers would do both all research and purchasing online, they don’t always follow this script. Many big brand retailers have noted that some shoppers physically visit locations in order to do preliminary research prior to making their purchases in person or online. Likewise, there are also consumers that look up items they are interested in purchasing online, mainly to determine which locations might carry the same items in stock as well as what prices they’re being sold at. In future years, it is expected that more consumers will begin making the majority of their purchases via the web but this is only a prediction.

Shoppers know that the best sales take place during only one time of the year. Online shopping may be convenient, but it isn’t a trend that has caught on with all shoppers. At the same time, consumers also know that they have to really look around to find the lowest prices. This might very well be why shoppers continue to use different methods when purchasing gifts during the holiday season.

Author: Carol Trehearn

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