As soon as December hits, we see the emergence of the determined shopping mindset: shoppers using all days and resources available to them, both in-store and online, to get their shopping done ahead of the holidays.
Here are three strategies brands should leverage to win over these always-on, determined shoppers.
1. Keep momentum post-Cyber 5
The opportunity for retailers is significant following Cyber 5, the peak deal period from Black Friday through Cyber Monday. According to a Mastercard analysis from BCG, 46% of U.S. consumer holiday spending occurred after Cyber Monday and before December 24 in 2022.1
So what’s driving this opportunity so late in the season?
First, many still have the bulk of their shopping left to complete and are more motivated than ever to get it done. Last year, the average U.S. holiday shopper still had 50% of their shopping left to do coming out of Cyber 52 and only three weeks to complete it. Gen Zers are an especially motivated subset with even more of their shopping left to complete relative to other generations.3
Second, post-Cyber 5 shoppers become more open-minded as they add to their lists to shop for others. Last year, 82% of peak-season purchases made in December were for someone other than the shopper, which is a significantly higher share than at any other point in the season.4 And as people shop for others, they’re considering more brands. In 2022, we saw the purchasing of new brands — ones that holiday shoppers hadn’t bought in the past — increase as the season progressed.5
Maintain momentum post-Cyber 5 to keep pace with these determined shoppers, and meet them where they are.
2. Create seamless omnichannel experiences
In-store shopping climbed to record heights last holiday season, topping $1 trillion for the first time ever.
One key behavior driving the rise in brick-and-mortar shopping is the use of digital resources before visiting a store. Such tools not only help people decide what they want to buy but also give them a way to buy it and pick it up at their convenience. “Last year, 30% of our online orders were fulfilled through our [more than] 1,350 physical stores, which is very different from what it was a couple years ago,” Cherie Yates, manager of search at Ulta Beauty, told Think with Google.
Last year, 30% of our online orders were fulfilled through our [more than] 1,350 physical stores, which is very different from what it was a couple years ago.
– Cherie Yates, manager of search at Ulta Beauty
People are increasingly tapping into multiple digital channels over the course of the season. Last year, more than half of shoppers used five or more channels, like video and social media, to shop over a two-day period, and that proportion of shoppers increased in December.6 These channels are crucial resources to the 2 in 3 U.S. consumers who make decisions about what they’re going to buy before they get to the store.7
Among these channels are Search and YouTube. On Search, the platform was used before 95% of in-store holiday shopping occasions in 2022.8 On YouTube, more than half of Gen Z are using YouTube for their holiday shopping, according to a U.S. survey conducted by Ipsos.9 YouTube is a familiar resource to these especially motivated shoppers who grew up with the platform and use it to better understand the interests and passions of those for whom they’re buying gifts.
Retailers with established omnichannel strategies report higher rates of revenue growth10 and are poised to draw these shoppers. As part of your holiday marketing strategy, consider using Local Inventory Ads to highlight local fulfillment options to determined shoppers so they can find you when they are looking to check out gifts in person — or pick them up at the last minute.
3. Take advantage of every day in December
Determined shoppers use all resources available to them to complete their shopping, including their spare time. They almost equally spread out their purchases between weekdays and weekends. Last holiday season, consumers spent on average $4.2 billion on weekdays and $4.4 billion on weekend days, according to a Mastercard credit card analysis conducted by BCG.11
To keep up with this always-on, determined shopper, you should have an always-on strategy. Weekday or weekend, AI-powered tools like Video Action campaigns and Performance Max campaigns can help you reach determined shoppers across touchpoints and in the moments they’re ready to buy.
Nailing all of this with your holiday marketing strategy will also set you up for the post-holiday devoted shopping mindset: shoppers who continue to shop for gifts, deals, and themselves after December 25.