A Piece of Good News - Online Spending to Increase over Holidays
MarketingVox has reporting some positive news from The Conference Board. The are predicting a slight increase in online sales over the holidays. Whew - somebody thinks things are going to be ok. The Conference Board's Consumer Internet Barometer tells us:
Online Consumers to Spend Less in Stores for Holidays
Online consumers intend to spend less in stores during this holiday season than last, but slightly more online - where they expect free shipping and deals not available in stores, according to The Consumer Internet Barometer from The Conference Board and TNS, reports Retailer Daily.
Bargain hunting will remain the driving force behind online sales, notes the quarterly report, which surveys 10,000 households across the country and tracks who's doing what on the internet.
"Free shipping, exclusive online deals, coupons and discounts are among the incentives consumers will be expecting this season," said Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center."
Online sales across retail channels are forecast to grow 9% this holiday season, compared with a total retail sales forecast of just 1.5% growth this year in the key holiday shopping retail sectors, according to TNS Retail Forward. It expects online sales to reach $42.5 billion in the fourth quarter, up $3.5 billion from last year.
Consumers More Cost-Conscious
The ongoing sentiment among online holiday shoppers is that free shipping, coupons, and discount offers would encourage them to spend more online.
- Shipping charges, which are the most frustrating aspect of online shopping, tend to frustrate women more than men: 47% versus 38%.
- About 93% of women versus 87% of men say free shipping would serve as a motivation to spend more online this holiday season.
- More than 71% said special offers and deals not available in stores would boost their online spending, with little difference between men and women.
- More than 70% of women and 68% of men said they would be willing to spend more if merchants offered coupons/discounts.
- Also, 48% of women say they would spend more online if sites offered free return postage, compared with 39% of men who felt this way.