Online Holiday Shopping To Surpass In-Store Shopping

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For the first time, the Internet has surpassed brick-and-mortar stores as the preferred way for multi-channel shoppers to buy holiday gifts, according to a new survey by the e-tailing group.

Nearly half (49%) of those surveyed said they plan on doing their gift buying online while 44 percent intend to do so in-store.

Reasons for shopping online include saving time (88%), locating hard-to-find products (84%), greater selection (83%) and avoiding crowds at the mall (83%). Saving money was still an important factor for 80 percent.

Due to the economy, 52 percent of consumers plan to buy fewer holiday gifts this year. The average number of gifts is estimated to be down from 16 or more last year to 11-15 this year based on the online survey of more than 1,000 adults who shop online e 4 or more times per year, spending $500+ annually.

Even though some consumers plan to buy fewer gifts and spend less for those gifts, 72 percent compared to 65 percent in 2007 are planning to research products online before making a purchase. The majority (91%) plan to buy the same number or somewhat more gifts online, equal to last year’s spending level.

"Value spending is definitely the mantra as these multi-tasking consumers watch and monitor the web to get the best deals, observes Lauren Freedman, President of the e-tailing group.

"Holiday gift buying is particularly impacted by this propensity for shopping smart as consumers preview online to get the most for their money."

The top customer reason for not buying more online is the high cost of shipping according to 78 percent of those surveyed. Setting a fair policy and then tracking it competitively across the industry will be even more important during the upcoming holiday season.

"Although the Internet is now the shoppers’ channel of choice, economic pressures are making the stakes high for merchants. They need to continually learn from and react to their customer’s multi-channel demands," said Kelly O’Neill, eCommerce Marketing Director for ATG.

"It is imperative that practical solutions be deployed wisely throughout the holiday season and into 2009."

Online Holiday Shopping To Surpass In-Store Shopping
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  • http://www.babypushchairsonline.co.uk/index.php?cPath=2 baby pushchairs

    I am sure many of the brick-and-mortar stores are seeing the threat from online retailers. That’s the main reason we are seeing many offline businesses getting on the internet wagon. There can be immense benefits to bringing your offline business online but it comes with its own set of challenges as well.

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