holiday shopping trend
Are You Aware About Changing Holiday Shopping Trend?

Are You Aware About Changing Holiday Shopping Trend?


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This year, amid the US presidential elections and global pandemic, we are entering the most unusual holiday season any of us have experienced before. It’s high time to catch up with the emerging holiday shopping trends to inculcate the whole new shopping behavior into your festive marketing strategy. This article is all about consumer behavior towards online shopping – to give you a holistic view of the emerging holiday shopping trends.

 But the question is – why should you be tracking holiday shopping trends? Why is there a need to know consumer search behavior? Well, let’s figure it out.

What Has Impacted the Holiday Shopping Trend & Why You Should Keep a Check on it?  

The impact of the pandemic has been a wake-up call. Consumer behavior towards online shopping shifted dramatically between March & August. During the first wave of lockdown, customers focused on stocking up on groceries and household goods. Nickel-and-dime merchandise like apparel and accessories experienced a 51% drop in sales in March and 86% in April for US retailers. 

holiday shopping trend

During the second wave of lockdown, shopping behavior shifted towards products that supported a stay-at-home environment. During this time, consumer search behavior was inclined towards electronics, home office, home theater, games, and streamed content. 

Third wave of the pandemic witnessed stronger sales in not-so-compulsory categories. From June to August 2020 – apparel and accessory sales plopped 22-25% (compared to last year). August turned out to be a gentle month that lasted through September. 

The shopping behavior of September month showed the best result in apparel and accessories, dropping by 12%. Segments like – grocery, home improvements, and warehouse stores did show some positive results. 

If we flip the pages of consumer search behavior, then there’s hardly a period like 2020 where consumer behavior towards online shopping showed such high dynamism! Every month consumer search behavior changed and online sellers had a hard time understanding the trends. 

To be able to cope up with such high dynamism of consumer behavior towards online shopping especially during the time of the festive season, you’ve got to understand the facets of holiday shopping trends. Pandemic is still there, and now we have 2020’s biggest holidays in line. If you think that consumer search behavior and shopping patterns are just like the old-time, that’s where you’re going wrong. Maybe that’s why you’re not able to captivate holiday shoppers this year!

Tracking Consumer Behaviour Towards Online Shopping During Festive Season – 

  • GenX is likely to dominate this holiday season. 
  • More than 87% of holiday shoppers are likely to shop online. Smartphones and laptops will continue to dominate the mode of online shopping. 
  • Omni-channel retailers are still unbeatable as compared to conventional sellers. 

Yes, you heard it right – smartphones and laptops are (and will be) the mode to shop online. Probably that’s why we’ll excavate deep into the shopper’s psyche and figure our consumer search behavior during the festive season. 

What are Holiday Shoppers Searching on the Internet? – Unboxing Consumer Search Behaviour

If holiday shoppers are shopping through their smartphones and laptops, they must be searching for something right? What are they searching for? What is their search behavior? If you’re able to catch their search intent, you’re already one step closer to attaining online shoppers! 

Thanks to Google! The search engine giant shared holiday shopper’s shopping behavior on its search engine. Google’s contribution to holiday shopping trends has been commendable. Here’s what Google revealed this year – 

  • Searches for the best affordable have grown globally by over 60% year-over-year. 
  • While for fashion online shopping are up by 600% year-over-year. 
  • Searches for online clothing stores have increased by 100% globally year-over-year. 
  • Searched for available near me have grown 100%  globally year-over-year. 
  • Searches for curbside pickup have grown over 3000% globally year-over-year. 
  • Searched for support for local businesses grew by over 20,000% since last year. 

Crazy isn’t it? Consumer behavior towards online shopping from June – August 2020 clearly stated that the apparel sector globally was bleeding. But the present shopping behavior illustrates that an influx of customers is shopping for online clothing during this festive season. 

Goodbye to Conventional Shopping Patterns – 

consumer behavior towards online shopping

According to Google’s survey data, the shopping behavior of holiday shoppers is witnessing a considerable shift. Here are some key takeaways – 

  • 69% of the US holiday shoppers plan to shop online during this festive season. That’s much more than the previous year! 
  • More than 50% of US shoppers tried a new shopping service for the first time this year. 
  • 70% of the US shoppers said they were open to buying from new retailers.

This indicated that online shoppers are open to change. The pandemic may have disrupted the shopping experience. But all this is not going to stop people from finding new options! 

It becomes crucial for online stores to inculcate innovations and advanced technology to create a frictionless experience for holiday shoppers. With online shopping expected to rush through the end of 2020, alternative purchase methods could help brands connect with customers and sustain sales demand. Following are some great ways to captivate holiday shoppers with your delivery style – 

  1. Buy online, pick up in-store. 
  2. Curbside pickup. 
  3. Package lockers. 
  4. Drone delivery. 

Holiday shopping trends also denote that buy online, pick up in-store surged 259% year-over-year in August 2020. As of August, three-fourths of the top 50 Us store-based retailers offered curbside pickup (According to Coresight research). 

Consumer Search Behavior During this Festive Season – 

  • 62% of the US shoppers are most likely to start their festive shopping earlier to avoid items being out of stock. 
  • 46% of US shoppers expect retailers to roll out discounts and coupons. 
  • 77% of the holiday shoppers said they would browse for gift ideas online and not in-store. 
  • 46% of the US shoppers agreed that “I make deliberate efforts to shop at businesses that align with my values!”
  • 66% of the US shoppers who plan to shop for this festive season said they will shop more at local small businesses. 

Being aware that local businesses are bleeding the most during this pandemic, consumer behavior towards online shopping falls in favor of local stores. This year, holiday shoppers are looking for ways to give back to their community rather than running after big brands. 

Holiday Shopping Trend & Smartphones – An Unbreakable Bond!

Smartphones contributed a third of all holiday spends last year. This trail was followed by desktops. In fact, smartphones served more of an information tool than buying one!

holiday shopping trend

As per the holiday shopping trends, customers will use their smartphones even inside stores to scan barcodes and navigate in-store. Retailers must ensure a seamless experience across devices and a great app experience. 

holiday shopping trend

If you haven’t thought about launching your store’s mobile version it’s high time now! Magenative comes with a 30-day trial. You can build your custom native mobile app and enhance your store’s reach. Push notification, single-page checkout comes in handy!

Key to Approach Customers is Knowing Consumer Search Behavior – 

Usually, marketers look at last year’s holiday shopping trends and plan their present year’s festive marketing strategy, advertising campaigns – which is not wrong! But going in the flashbacks won’t be enough to come up with a captivating marketing strategy for your online store this year! 

  • 57% of consumers turn to search when they don’t have a brand in mind. 
  • 91% of searchers on Microsoft Search Network were non-branded last year. 
  • 89% of consumers reported that they find online advertising important in product discovery. 

Authentic, personalized experiences, optimized content, and advanced audience targeting is the key but winning consumer’s hearts will require reaching out to them in the first place and holding their attention long enough to make a connection! 

From social media promotion to your ads – everything needs to be aligned and synced with your online store! 

We are Coming to Conclusion, BUT – 

Before we sum up things, here are some more stats to support the statement that consumer behavior towards online shopping is experiencing a significant change, and if as a store owner you don’t track the trends, you’re most likely to stay nominal in terms of popularity of your store and number of successful orders. Thanks to ThinkwithGoogle for these amazing insights –

consumer behavior towards online shopping

What Did You Learn? 

While eCommerce is fascinating, it’s a deep abyss at the same time! The internet bridges the gap between customers and online sellers but this doesn’t mean that just by opening an online store you’ll be able to dominate in your niche. 

That’s where you need to – 

  1. Acknowledge consumer behavior in online shopping. 
  2. Stay up to date with your holiday shopping trends and consumer search behavior.
  3. Inculcate the findings in your store’s strategy to reap the benefits. 

Users are not only searching for a product on Google’s search bar. There are global marketplaces (both product and region-specific) that can help your store in getting the right exposure you always wanted to. 

It’s not bad to consult an eCommerce expert to help you with your store’s design, improving user experience, and crafting customer apps for online stores.

Great things not only require time, but great things also require a couple of brains!

Summing Up –

With changing holiday shopping trends, your festive marketing strategy should also improvise! While you strive to achieve a captivating eCommerce store, we are always there to help you in having a smooth eCommerce journey. 

Happy selling!

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