2016 Holiday Shopping In Review

 

Did you hear that? That was consumers, retailers, and all of Santa’s elves heaving one, giant sigh of relief.

The holiday shopping craze is behind us!

The last few weeks have been exciting, stressful, and important for retailers. Let’s take a step back and figure out what happened! Now that the holiday season is just about behind us, we are able to talk about some of the interesting trends we saw this holiday season. Many of the trends we noticed support what Deliv CEO, Daphne Carmeli, predicted in her piece for internetretailer.com just a few weeks ago!

Holiday Shopping Is Still Big Business

Everyone from Forbes to the President-Elect is talking about the 4%+ increase in holiday sales that are expected to have been recorded over the last few weeks. Deloitte’s 2016 Holiday Survey expects sales to have topped 1 trillion dollars for the first time in the three months from November to the end of January.

Continuing its recent dominance, e-commerce seems to be playing a substantial role in this year’s sales growth with Amazon reporting that the 2016 holiday season was its best yet. The internet retailer shipped over a billion items to its prime members. 

Last Minute Shopping Wins Again

Consumers have become accustomed to instant gratifications. Our favorite movies can be streamed immediately, and the local cuisine is a Grubhub delivery away. What we have only seen develop within the past few years is instant gratification affecting holiday shopping habits.

Consumers increasingly wait until late in the holiday season. RetailNext predicted that Black Friday, the previous peak of the holiday shopping season, will slip to the third most popular in store day. Dec 23rd and 17th have now become the two most popular in store shopping days. Retailers noticed. Toys R Us and Kohl’s, for instance, remained open around the clock in the days leading up to Christmas Eve. 

Same Day Delivery is Huge

As Daphne Carmeli mentioned in her expectations for this holiday season, traditional shipping companies have seen a 2x delivery spike compared to a typical day in the days before Christmas. Deliv saw a 6x delivery spike during that same period last year and, based on our early numbers, we have seen similar growth this year! To take advantage of the final stretch, Bloomingdale’s and Petsmart offered free same day delivery to their holiday shoppers.

This all ties back into consumers’ reliance on immediacy. There is no longer a need for shoppers to rush. With the meteoric rise in 2-day, next-day, and same-day delivery options, waiting until December 23rd or 24th is an entirely reasonable way of doing holiday shopping.

Times are changing and holiday shopping is no exception! Deliv is excited to be on the forefront of the new retail environment and setting the standard for consumer expectations.

 

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