The holiday season is here, and there’s no better time to ensure that your business is ready for the Christmas shopping rush. Many shoppers have started ticking items off their lists as early as November, but it’s definitely not too late to leverage these holiday retail sales statistics for more profits.
To help you figure out the best way to prepare for the holiday season, we’ve compiled a list of Christmas shopping statistics. Through this data, you can figure out who’s shopping, what they’re shopping for, and how much they’re willing to spend.
Holiday Retail Sales Statistics
American consumers have been consistently spending more money on Christmas gifts each year since 2008. Holiday retail sales statistics for the previous year prove just how much Americans love the tradition of Christmas gift-giving.
The numbers also indicate that a significant portion of holiday retail sales can be attributed to online and non-store channels. With the right shopping cart software in place, you can make sure that your online store is ready for the influx of customers this Christmas season.
- Total holiday retail sales in 2018 reached $701.2 billion. (NRF)
- Online and other non-store sales account for $146.8 billion of these sales. (NRF)
- US households spent an average of $1,536 during the previous Christmas holiday season. (Deloitte)
- Holiday sales are expected to grow by 3.8% to 4.2% over 2018. (NRF)
- Holiday shopping can account for up to 30% of all retail sales. (muchneeded)
- The period between December 15 through the 24th will account for 40% of all Christmas sales. (muchneeded)
- US shoppers spent $125.91 billion online during last year’s holiday season. (Adobe)
- Online holiday shopping in the US is expected to reach $143.7 billion in 2019. (Adobe)
- E-commerce growth is projected to represent about 63% of overall retail growth. (Adobe)
Cyber Monday statistics
Along with Black Friday, Cyber Monday is one of the most profitable days of the Christmas shopping season. This year’s Cyber Monday revenue has proven to be the highest so far, with most of the online sales coming from smartphones.
- US online sales for Cyber Monday 2019 amounted to $9.4 billion, up 19.7% from last year’s total sales of $7.9 billion. (Adobe)
- Cyber Monday has the highest conversion rate – 6.39% – across the Christmas season. (Wordstream)
- At $3.1 billion, online sales from smartphones account for 33% of Cyber Monday sales. (Adobe)
- Moreover, desktop computers had the highest conversion rate at 7.6%, trailed by tablets at 5.5% and smartphones at 3.2%. (Adobe)
- Ecommerce giants continue to outperform smaller businesses, with the former seeing a 71% boost in revenue and the latter seeing a growth of 32%. (Adobe)
Shopper Profile Statistics
With competition in retail being as fierce as it is these days, you’ll need every advantage you can get. Knowing the demographics of Christmas shoppers can give you an edge. You can use the data with marketing software to create more personalized campaigns that can encourage sales and boost conversion.
- Men shop just as much as women, but men tend to spend more, with an average spend of over $725 for men and $609 for women in the US and over £410 for men and £373 for women in the UK. (muchneeded)
- Gen Xers account for the highest Christmas spending with an average of $782 in the US and £425 in the UK. (muchneeded)
- Gen X is the most likely generation to buy clothing or accessories (68%) and entertainment items (44%). Gen Xers also have a higher likelihood of shopping at mass merchants (51%) and online pure-plays (77%). (NPD)
- Millennials have the second-highest holiday spending: $609 in the US and £416 in the UK. (muchneeded)
- The lowest spending amount goes to Baby Boomers, who will spend an average of $576 in the US. And £350 in the UK. (muchneeded)
- Baby boomers are more likely than other generations to shop at department stores (24%) and national chains (27%). (NPD)
- With their plans to spend more than $2,100, “high spenders” are expected to account for 60% of total holiday spend. (Deloitte)
- Bing searchers outspend the average Internet searcher by 34%. (Wordstream)
Shoppers’ Buying Habits Statistics
Statistics say that most consumers do their shopping early. However, there are six fewer days in the holiday season this year, and this may cause shopping activities to peak in early December. This means you have just enough time to ensure that you’re ready for this influx of customers.
Online shopping statistics also indicate the growing popularity of ecommerce, and research on Christmas shopping habits corroborates this. It’s all the more reason to ensure that your online store is in top shape for the holiday season. One way to do that is to evaluate your website’s performance against KPIs like SEO and UX. This way, you can be sure that customers can find your website and enjoy a smooth, secure shopping experience.
- 60% of US consumers start their Christmas shopping before December. (Statista)
- 62% of US shoppers buy gifts in the week before Christmas. (Fortunly)
- 60% of shoppers in the US prefer to shop online. (Deloitte)
- 66% of American shoppers do research online but ultimately shop at brick-and-mortar stores. (Deloitte)
- Industry experts predict that, by 2020, 85% of all holiday season transactions will be AI-based. (muchneeded)
- 47% of shoppers don’t want to pay for shipping. (muchneeded)
- 85% of shoppers prefer free shipping to fast shipping. (Deloitte)
- 67% of shoppers plan to buy more from online marketplaces this year. (Salesforce)
- Online stores with in-store order pickup are expected to earn 28% more during the last 5 days of the holiday season. (Salesforce)
- 68% of shoppers pay more attention to emails from companies during the holiday season. (Salesforce)
- 47% of shoppers say that their only purchases this holiday season will be items on sale. (Salesforce)
- 23% of Christmas shoppers in the US rely on social media for making decisions. (Fortunly)
- 20% of holiday shoppers will be getting shopping inspiration from Instagram. (Salesforce)
- Price discounts (74%) and free shipping (72%) are the two most appealing promotional offers to consumers. (Deloitte)
Most Popular Shopping Cart Software
If you need to reinforce your online shopping business this holiday, there’s no shortage of affordable shopping cart platforms that scale to seasonal highs. Consider the following solutions:
- Wix. Wix lets you customize your own online store even without using code. Product galleries and configurators also make shopping more convenient for customers. Learn more details in our Wix review.
- X-Cart. X-Cart offers flexible plans to support solo entrepreneurs and businesses of all sizes. The platform is designed to easily handle up to 1M SKUs, too. You can learn more about this enterprise-ready platform through our X-Cart review.
- Bigcommerce. Bigcommerce is a scalable platform that offers fully customizable storefront templates. Plus, the platform lets you sell digital goods, too. For more details, check out our Bigcommerce review.
- Shopify. Shopify offers easy setup, plus managed hosting, so that’s one less thing for you to worry about. The platform also has features for abandoned cart recovery. Check out our Shopify review for more information on the platform.
- 3dcart. 3dcart gives you complete control through an intuitive administration interface. The platform also offers built-in integrations for social media and email marketing. Learn more about the software through our 3dcart review.
What are shoppers buying?
Getting insights on what shoppers are buying can help you figure out which items to put the spotlight on. Research indicates that people will most likely purchase clothing and accessories, whether as gifts or for themselves. You can highlight these products in your marketing efforts to bump up your revenue for this holiday season.
For instance, with statistics saying that shoppers pay more attention to emails at this time of year, you can focus your email newsletters on these products and categories.
- 56% of all shoppers buy gift cards. (muchneeded)
- 66% of Christmas shoppers will pay more for sustainable products. (Deloitte)
- The three retail categories with the highest share of total holiday spending are clothing and accessories (26%), food and beverage/health and wellness (20%), and toys and hobbies (17%). (Deloitte)
- The top 5 items people plan to buy for themselves are food or liquor (42%), clothing (39%), shoes (28%), books (22%), and cosmetics or fragrances (21%). (Deloitte)
Clothing and accessories%
Food and beverage/health and wellness%
Electronics and accessories%
Source: Deloitte Designed by
Make the Most of the Holiday Shopping Rush
The holiday season is always a profitable time of the year for retailers, and, with the upswing in consumer purchasing parity, this year’s holiday spending statistics look to be bigger. Brick-and-mortar stores will continue to see a lot of business, but the growth of ecommerce sales makes a case for the soundness of pursuing these opportunities for added revenue this year.
If you’re interested in more wide-ranging data about shopping and retail in general, we’ve also compiled some retail statistics that you can gain insights from.