Deloitte: Holiday Gift Spending Remains Steady

Consumers are budgeting about the same amount of money for gifts in the upcoming holiday season as they did last year, according to the Deloitte holiday survey of consumer spending intentions and trends.

Survey respondents, on average, maintained that they would spend 51% of their budgets online with the proportion exceeding the in-store spending expectation for the first time ever. Gift spending intentions remains stable compared with last year, averaging $430 among survey respondents who also plan to purchase 15 gifts in the 2017 holiday season, up slightly year over year.

Celebrations including holiday entertaining and socializing outside of home represent roughly 40% of total holiday spending, and should come to about $480, on average among consumers. The survey suggested total holiday spending of $1,226 on average. The figure rises to $2,226 among households earning $100,000 or more.

“The amount people are actually spending on gifts remains steady compared with prior surveys, but we’ve watched the mix of total holiday spending shift incrementally over the last five years,” said Rod Sides, vice chairman, Deloitte and U.S. retail, wholesale and distribution leader. “It’s the lure of shopping, and the experience that is flourishing and likely to remain in high demand, all of which bodes well for retailers that have created an experience blending one-of-a-kind items, inspiration, uncomplicated navigation and frictionless transactions.”

He added, “Whether a retailer is online or store-based, their digital influence is one of the strongest cards to play this holiday. Even though 80% said they expect the majority of their shopping will fall in late November onward, decisions about where they’ll shop and what they buy will be largely determined by the digital interactions occurring now. We found that retailers have a 75% probability of converting a desktop or laptop shopper to a purchaser along with a 59% probability of converting a smartphone shopper.”