Shopping for this year’s holiday season is set to begin earlier than normal, with many consumers also likely to focus on early promotions and register lower spending than usual, according to predictions from Meredith, the media firm.

Alysia Borsa, Meredith’s evp/chief marketing and data officer, discussed this subject at the Association of National Advertisers’ (ANA) 2020 Digital and Social Media Conference, which was held online.

Meredith’s predictions drew on vast first-party data, information from a large consumer panel and the insights of editorial teams from titles like People, Better Homes & Gardens, Entertainment Weekly and InStyle. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: Meredith predicts consumers will use e-commerce to drive an earlier, quieter 2020 holiday season.)

While Meredith is “still running a lot of these numbers,” Borsa outlined several projections in progress that are set to shape the 2020 holiday season.

“Three-quarters of the Meredith households are really looking forward to making plans and celebrating this holiday season,” Borsa said in summarising the overall insight.

“However, we do know that over 72% of that audience believes these holidays are going to be different than what we have seen in the past.”

One of the indicators for the holidays from Meredith’s research is a continuing e-commerce boom, extending a major shift that began with the outbreak of COVID-19.

In addition to looking for value, Borsa said, these e-commerce shoppers will be looking for “ease”, with marketing technology providing the means for satisfying click-to-cart experiences.

The holiday season, she continued, will begin earlier: “Everything about the holiday season is actually going to start earlier this year … even as soon as right after the Labor Day holiday,” Borsa said.

A focus on early offers is also likely among consumers: “There's going to be an emphasis on early deals, promotions, and providing value” as one of the new drivers of early-on shopping, Borsa said.

Widespread unemployment and a recession will also lead to constrained expenditure for many shoppers. “There’s going to be a more conservative approach to spending this holiday season,” Borsa said.

“We've seen that over 50% of Meredith families are concerned about their jobs. And over a third of them have already experienced some loss of income.”


Sourced from WARC