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Deloitte forecasts E-Commerce to outperform in-store spending this festive season

The online spending will overtake the in-store spending for the first time, citing a study conducted by the research firm Deloitte, titled: Deloitte 2017 Holiday Retail Survey. After surveying more than 5,000 US consumers, Deloitte’s 2017 Holiday Retail Survey found, for the first time ever, that people plan to spend a majority of their holiday budget online, noted the report.

Parameters

According to the report, the forecast was based on the survey question asking participants, “What percentage of your total holiday budget do you expect to spend: online via a desktop or laptop, online via a Smartphone, online via a tablet, in-store, catalogs or direct mail, or other?”

Research Findings

While the research takes an odd route to get to this number, the findings showed that 36% of holiday budgets will be spent on a desktop or laptop, 10% on a Smartphone, and 5% on a tablet — making up the 51% of holiday dollars participants expect to spend online. Citing the survey findings, online shopping is outperforming the in-store shopping experience in five key areas, the biggest benefit being the ease of searching, the report further pointed out.

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Key store attributes driving retail format preferences

Deloitte reports 83% of the survey participants said they would be using a desktop or laptop for their holiday shopping. (This survey question was separate from the question asking what percentage of holiday budgets would be spent online or in-store.), noted the report.

When asked how they plan to use their desktop or laptops, 75% of respondents said browsing online, 75% making purchases online, 68% checking and comparing prices online, and 62% reading product reviews online.

To the question as to how they planned to use a desktop/laptop to assist you in your holiday shopping, the survey found the top three reasons Smartphones are used for holiday shopping include browsing online (67%), checking and comparing prices (65%) and tracking order status (63%). Almost 59% of survey participants said they planned to use their Smartphones for purchasing holiday items. When asked how they plan to use their Smartphones for making holiday purchases, the largest majority (40%) said they would pay a retailer via the retailer’s app and 22% of respondents report they will pay for in-store items using a mobile wallet solution such as Apple Pay.

Planned usage of mobile as a payment platform

In the release announcing Deloitte’s 2017 Holiday Retail Survey, the firm says it forecasts an 18-21% year-over-year increase in 2017’s holiday e-commerce sales. Last year, online spending between November 2016 and January 2017 was up 14.3% from the year before, totaling $93.8 billion.

The Internet isn’t just for browsing anymore

In last year’s survey, online and in-store purchases comprised an equal share, at 47% each. This year, we saw a jump in the number of consumers who were doing research online and making purchases there. Survey respondents plan to spend 51 percent of their budget online, compared with 42 percent in-store. Here are some additional findings of online purchasing:

Respondents earning $100,000 or more expect 57% of their spending will be online and 39% in-store, 55% of respondents plan to shop online for gifts, increasing online shopping’s lead over mass merchants, where 44% of those polled plan to shop. At 28% and down three percentage points from last year, department stores placed a distant third behind the Internet and mass merchants as a shopping destination.

Usage of the Smartphone in the shopping journey

Smartphone users are more are inclined to use dedicated retailer apps or payment apps when making purchases. When it comes to Smartphone purchases:

  • 22% of respondents using Smartphones for holiday shopping think they’ll pay for purchases in-store with a mobile wallet app
  • 40% anticipate using a retailer’s app on their smartphone
  • 36% plan to use a mobile payment app during the holiday season
  • Retailers have a 59% probability of converting a Smartphone shopper to a purchaser and a 75% probability of converting a desktop or laptop shopper. For a full report, visit 2.deloitte.com.

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