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The latest Shopify-Gallup Holiday Shopping Pulse survey reveals a significant shift in consumer behavior during the Black Friday-Cyber Monday (BFCM) weekend. Increasingly, Americans are using these sales not just for gift shopping but also for self-gifting. According to the survey, 64% of respondents are likely to buy items for themselves, and 13% plan to exclusively self-gift.

This emerging trend signifies a change in the traditional holiday shopping narrative, with consumers using holiday discounts not only for gifts but also to indulge in personal purchases. High-ticket items and everyday essentials are among the top picks for self-gifting.

Impact on Small Businesses and Merchants

  • Self-Gifting Opportunities: This shift offers an excellent opportunity for businesses to tailor their marketing strategies. By promoting self-gifting alongside traditional gift-giving, merchants can attract a broader range of customers. For example, Hushed Commotion, a wedding accessories business, sees a significant portion of its November sales from BFCM discounts, as brides use these deals for their big-day purchases.
  • Small Business Saturday Enthusiasm: The survey also highlights the growing interest in supporting small businesses, with 36% of shoppers planning to buy from small businesses on Small Business Saturday. This trend emphasizes the importance of small businesses sharing their stories and connecting with customers on a personal level.

Gen Z’s Shopping Preferences

The survey indicates that Gen Z shoppers (ages 18-29) value in-person shopping experiences, contrasting with older demographics. However, they are also the most inclined to shop through social media, reflecting a desire for a versatile shopping experience. This demographic’s preferences also lean towards specific product categories like food and drink, and apparel and accessories.

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Cyber Monday Gaining More Popularity

Cyber Monday continues to outshine Black Friday, with 61% of shoppers likely to make purchases on this day, compared to 41% for Black Friday. This trend suggests that merchants should focus on offering compelling deals on Cyber Monday, utilizing the traffic from Black Friday to build momentum.

Trending Products in October

Shopify’s data also sheds light on early holiday shopping trends, with significant increases in sales of seasonal items such as Christmas tree skirts, holiday stockings, and cookie cutters. This data is crucial for merchants to anticipate demand and stock up accordingly.

A Diverse Shopping Season Ahead

This holiday season is shaping up to be diverse, with a blend of self-gifting, support for small businesses, and a mix of online and in-person shopping experiences. Merchants can capitalize on these trends by diversifying their marketing strategies and ensuring they cater to the varying needs of their customers. As we approach the busiest time of the year, this shift in consumer behavior presents both challenges and opportunities for businesses of all sizes.

Image: Envato Elements




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