Austin, Texas-based Revionics, a provider of retail pricing, promotions, markdowns and advanced analytics solutions, revealed the findings of its “Holiday Report: 2020 Pricing and Shopping Trends” based on a survey of 1,041 U.S. consumers. The survey illuminates holiday consumer behaviors and pricing trends to help retailers prepare their pricing, promotion and markdown strategies for a successful season.
According to the survey, 70 percent of respondents will actively seek promotions and coupons when holiday shopping, and 45 percent said that discounts will be one of the most important factors in deciding where to shop. To meet these consumer expectations and drive sales, retailers must offer the right promo mix and strengthen their pricing strategy this holiday season.
Make the holidays as usual as possible
After an unprecedented year of pandemic and economic uncertainty, consumers are largely anticipating and desiring a sense of normalcy this holiday season. The survey found that 56 percent of respondents plan to spend the same amount of money holiday shopping this year as last, despite 29 percent of respondents saying their personal finances have decreased since the beginning of COVID-19.
Over half of consumers said that compared to last year, they would spend the same amount of time looking for better deals, the same amount of money on their Thanksgiving meals and the same amount of money holiday shopping online versus in person.
“We’re glad to find that despite the many setbacks and unpredictable sales trends for retailers this year, the holidays are looking hopeful as consumers strive for festivities not all that different from the past,” said Steve Leven, COO of Revionics, an Aptos company. “Consumers aren’t going to let the pandemic affect their typical holiday experience, and retailers have a big opportunity to make this possible by meeting their expectations.”
Price smarter and start promos earlier
With more time and less money, consumers are shopping smarter and earlier for the holidays by looking for the best prices, expecting more promotions and extending the shopping season.
- 77 percent of survey respondents said pricing was a top consideration when choosing where to do their holiday shopping.
- 74 percent of respondents say they plan to compare prices while shopping online, and 69 percent plan to compare prices while shopping in person.
- 45 percent of consumers have more free time to shop this year, and 35 percent say they will use that extra time look for better deals and discounts.
- 46 percent of shoppers plan to start their holiday shopping before the weekend of Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
“Pricing will be key this holiday season as consumers search for the best prices during this extended holiday season,” said Leven. “To stay ahead of competitors and drive sales, retailers will need to determine the most effective promotional strategy across every channel, both online and in store. They must also start promotions and markdowns now while demand is up, keeping up with competitor price changes and evolving market trends to win over consumers. With the right data and strategy, retailers can look forward to closing out the year with strong sales and margins.”
Focus on pricing across retail channels for holiday shopping
While consumers largely anticipate spending roughly the same amount this holiday season as last, 30 percent of respondents said they plan to spend more money online than last year. Contactless delivery and pickup also will remain important through the holiday season. Sixty-three percent of shoppers plan to utilize buy online pickup in store or curbside services, and 40 percent of consumers said that access to those services are top considerations in choosing where to do their holiday shopping.
At the same time, in-store holiday shopping is not dead. The number of respondents who shopped Black Friday sales in person last year compared to the number who plan to this year has barely changed. In regard to the entire holiday shopping season, 56 percent of survey respondents said they still plan to shop in store this year, and only 14 percent of consumers said they will not do any kind of in-person holiday shopping.
To provide the multi-channel shopping experience customers want, retailers must have a strong pricing strategy both online and in store. They must also understand which offers will perform better on different channels. For retailers to successfully nail this multi-channel strategy, they can dig into the data of past promotions and use predictive analytics to consider the evolving trends from COVID-19, confidently forecasting consumer demand this holiday season.
For more survey results and to learn how retailers can align holiday pricing strategies with shoppers’ expectations, download the “Holiday Report: 2020 Pricing and Shopping Trends.”