NEW YORK: More US consumers plan to shop online this year, but that won’t necessarily extend to Black Friday or other traditional holiday shopping events, a new survey has revealed.

With Thanksgiving and Black Friday not much more than a month away, professional services firm Accenture has published research into the likely shopping intentions of US consumers this holiday season.

Based on responses from 1,500 US adults, Accenture’s 11th Annual Holiday Shopping Survey found that more than half (52%) said they are less likely to shop on Black Friday this year.

A similar proportion (50%) said the same about Thanksgiving while 42% reported that they are less likely to shop on Cyber Monday.

Of those who don’t intend to shop on Black Friday, about two-thirds (64%) cited the crowds of people competing for bargains as the reason, although the availability of year-round bargain-buying is another.

A further two-thirds (64%) said they shop for holiday gifts throughout the year, especially following the rise of constant discounts from the likes of Amazon Prime.

And 44% of survey respondents cited the ability to get equally good discounts on other days of the year as one reason they are less inclined to shop on Black Friday.

However, while the survey appears to have identified a trend away from traditional shopping events, online retailers will be cheered by the finding that consumers expect to do more than half (54%) of their holiday shopping online this year.

Furthermore, half said that a convenient shopping experience online, including easy check-out and purchase via mobile apps, will positively affect how they spend this holiday season.

Retailers should also note the influence of recommendation because some 64% of respondents said their shopping experience would be made easier if they could get ideas for gifts for holidays and special occasions, as well as people they don’t regularly shop for.

More than half (54%) also cited online wish lists as another factor that would improve their shopping experience.

“Winning over the consumer will require providing active, rather than passive, shopping inspiration,” said Jill Standish, Senior Managing Director and Head of Accenture’s retail practice.

“For instance, by proactively offering gift recommendations for that special person, retailers can influence purchasing before consumers check out Amazon or other e-tailers,” she added.

Sourced from Accenture; additional content by WARC staff