Americans are (and did) flock to catalogs and the Web to find items on their holiday gift lists this past season.
But do you ever wonder how much people are spending, what they are buying, and how they did their shopping this holiday season? For these important answers, I turned to the experts … the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) who asks and reports …
Who is buying?
· More than two-thirds of Americans – 68 percent – shop from home, buying from catalogs, over the Internet, over the phone, or through the mail.
· Seventy-two percent of women shop from the home or office, compared to 63 percent of men.
How much will they spend?
· American adults plan to spend an average of $1,577 per person on holiday gifts in 2006.
· Men plan to spend $1,788 on gifts, while women plan to spend $1,318.
· Americans plan to spend an average of $203 on apparel gifts this holiday season. Other popular gifts include food ($240), electronics/computers ($192), general gifts ($201), toys and games ($129), home décor or furniture ($125), books/music/videos ($99), sporting goods ($69), tickets for sports/entertainment ($65), pet supplies ($46), flowers ($27), and gardening supplies ($34).
· Consumers and businesses will spend $144 billion on catalog purchases in 2006, an increase from $134 billion last year.
· The Web will generate nearly $339 billion in sales of all products and services in 2006, up from $275 billion in 2005.
When do they shop?
· Fourteen percent of shoppers planned to buy all of their holiday gifts before Thanksgiving.
· An additional 32 percent of shoppers will finish their gift buying two weeks before the holiday. Forty-five percent wait until the final week to complete their shopping, with 23 percent finishing the day before the holiday.
· Men are more likely to procrastinate, with 48 percent finishing their shopping the final week compared to 43 percent of women.
Why do they shop from home or office?
· Seventy percent of shoppers cite convenience as the reason they shop via catalogs, the Internet, mail, or phone.
· Other reasons for shopping from home or office include variety (50 percent), to save money (43 percent), and customer service (27 percent).
Thanks, DMA, for tracking, researching and adding perspective to catalog and online shopping. It certainly is an organization we can’t live without (p.s. they didn’t pay me a dime to say this!)