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26% of Americans Got an Earlier-Than-Usual Jump on Holiday Shopping

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With Christmas days away, some of us might not be feeling the hair-pulling stress of waiting until the 11th hour to get holiday shopping done. Fear, as they say, can be a powerful motivating force.

A recent survey from ProGlove, a German engineering company focused on smart wearable technology, shows more than 1 in 4 U.S. consumers (26%) who never start early got a jump on their holiday shopping this year because of shipping delays.

The majority of shoppers didn’t wait until the last minute

Some shoppers got a head start checking off items on their gift list this year because of shipping delays. Here’s where other consumers stood in October, when the survey was conducted:

  • Planned to get an early start but hadn’t yet (45%)
  • Expected to start at the same time as usual (27%)
  • Expected to start later than usual (4%)

Another 5% said they didn’t know.

Santa might not be on time: Out-of-stock fears, shipping delay concerns top shoppers’ worries

The reasons so many folks got a jump on their holiday shopping were concerns about:

  • Shipping delays (78%)
  • Retailers not being able to keep up with shopper demand (74%)
  • Items potentially being out of stock (67%)
  • Gifts sent to faraway relatives not arriving on time (59%)

Just 6% of respondents said they didn’t expect shipping delays this holiday season. Meanwhile, nearly half (49%) thought shipping delays would increase this holiday season compared to 2020, while 32% felt that delays would remain the same.

1 in 3 U.S. consumers shopping equally online and in-store

While shoppers seemed to adapt to contactless payments, social distancing and other safety measures while perusing the aisles of brick-and-mortar retailers, online shopping is preferred.

Among those surveyed, 1 in 3 (33%) said they planned on doing half their holiday shopping online and half in stores. Nearly 3 in 10 (28%) shoppers said they expected to do mostly online shopping, while only 13% said they expected doing mostly offline shopping.

An equal percentage of shoppers said they would be doing all their shopping either online or in stores — 11% — while 4% said they didn’t know.

If you’ve incurred a balance on your credit card from holiday shopping this year, you could start the new year right by committing to paying it off within a reasonable amount of time. If you’re in the throes of consumerism and doing some last-minute holiday shopping, get cash from an ATM and use only what you take out. You could also consider using cashback credit card rewards to avoid a holiday debt hangover.

Methodology: ProGlove commissioned Dynata to conduct a survey of U.S. consumers in October 2021. Respondents needed to be between 18 and 65 years old and have a household income between $50,000 and $150,000. They also had to account for at least half of their household’s shopping.