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Week of Sept 24th-Physical retail to dominate holiday shopping again this year, survey shows

September 24, 2017

The holiday shopping season will be a busy one for physical retailers: More than nine out of ten holiday shoppers (91 percent) plan to use physical stores for gift buying, and that goes up to 96 percent if those shoppers using physical retailers’ websites are added in, according to a report released this week by ICSC Research. Most holiday spending (69 percent) will take place at retailers with a physical presence, largely at their stores but also on their websites.

About 85 percent of holiday shoppers will visit a shopping center during the holidays, and four-fifths of these (81 percent) say they will also partake in other activities when they are there, such as eating at a restaurant or taking in a movie.

Even online shopping will prove lucrative for physical retailers, because 40 percent of holiday shoppers say they plan to buy on physical retailers’ websites and pick up the merchandise at the store. Moreover, 81 percent of the customers doing this say they are likely to make additional purchases when they go pick up their stuff, either at the store or at adjacent retailers.

In other good news for retailers, nearly half of all holiday shoppers (46 percent) say they’ll be spending more this year, the report says. On average, holiday shoppers intend to spend $728.40. Two-thirds of the shoppers say they plan to start shopping before Thanksgiving Day, while about one quarter (23 percent) will start over the Thanksgiving weekend and Cyber Monday. In all, 54 percent of all holiday shoppers say they will be out buying over the four-day Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Black Friday will be busy as usual, with more than four of 10 holiday shoppers planning to hit stores.

“Our annual Holiday Shopping Intentions findings demonstrate that consumers are very optimistic this holiday season and that physical retail remains a cornerstone of the holiday season,” said Tom McGee, ICSC’s president and CEO. “The more agile retailers are in meeting consumers’ demands for the seamless convergence of physical and digital shopping, the more success they will see.”

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