According to PeriscopeIQ’s Retail Intelligence Survey, less than one fifth of shoppers plan to go into stores and/or shop at all on Black Friday this year.
The survey also states that consumers nationwide say they will spend less on holiday shopping this year overall, less in amount per gift, and buy fewer gifts in total, indicating weaker holiday sales.
Don’t be too scared yet. Just like election polls, you really don’t know the outcome until you have it.
More than 58% of respondents to the survey, for example, said they plan to spend about the same on holiday gifts this year, while 14% said they will increase their spending.
But the funny thing is, people rarely do as they plan. What about the fact that even if they plan to spend the same, they will probably spend more simply because, in a year, prices have increased and guess what? Things cost more!
One of the biggest reasons you retailers, should be scared though, is that consumers have no plans to stop show rooming – that is, going to your store, checking out your products, then buying them on Amazon (or some other lower-priced site). How will you combat this?
Another interesting point the survey results illustrate is how few consumers really understand what QR codes do, despite retailers printing them on everything they can find. Only 18% said they had every used one even though 60% own smartphones that have built-in scanners or apps.
Respondents also said the price of gas will impact how much they’re willing to spend for the holidays, as will the price of shipping. Ninety-five percent said that free shipping is an important factor in deciding where they’ll make their online purchases.
The other point to note about PeriscopeIQ’s survey is that more than half of its respondents have smartphones. And sure, the survey says that 33% check prices at other stores or at websites through their mobile devices and 36% are using their phones to take pictures of merchandise for comparison shopping. But what about those who don’t have smartphones who may or may not plan to spend more this year? Especially since the survey also revealed that the respondents – most of who are digitally savvy – are still very aware of and influenced by print ads. How much do such ads play into the shopping behaviors of those that are not digitally savvy?
We can’t really know how this will all play out come next Friday. But still, it’s something to be aware of as you prepare for the rush (or lack there of) next week.