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E-commerce Holiday Shopping Trends Analysis 2023: Maximizing Sales during Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas

ecommerce holiday shopping trends analysis 2023

The holiday season holds a significant importance for e-commerce stores. The period around each significant holiday witnesses a surge in consumer spending, making them lucrative opportunities for businesses to boost their sales and revenue. In fact, last season, the industry made a whopping $211.7 billion dollars!

Analyzing last year’s 2022 eCommerce holiday trends will help us shed some light on some important aspects with which we can have a clear idea about the 2023 eCommerce holiday trends. Accordingly, we can plan sales, discounts, delivery strategies, and marketing strategies to increase revenue.

In this post, we are going to consider three most revenue-driving sales seasons-

  • Halloween
  • Christmas Eve
  • Thanksgiving

Along with the above-mentioned holiday sales, we will also consider Cyber Monday and Black Friday sales. With that note, let’s dive into the eCommerce holiday trends 2023 analysis.

  • According to the National Retail Federation report, Halloween celebrations are getting back to pre-pandemic level. Last year nearly 69% of the US population has celebrated Halloween.
  • Halloween spending in 2022 reached a record high of $10.6 billion in the United States alone.
  • 2022 spending shows an increase of $500 million when compared to 2021.

Top three sources for Halloween costume inspiration

Online Search
Retail Stores
Social Media

Source: NRF research report

  • Customers not only turn towards costume stores and online for inspiration but they are also likely to shop from those sources mostly when compared to other mediums and stores.

Most purchased products on Halloween

Last year’s Halloween sale revenue was $10.6 billion. Here is the split up of the revenue based on the product categories.

  • Costumes (including children’s and pet’s costumes) – $3.6 billion
  • Candy – $3.4 billion
  • Decorations – $ 3.1 billion
  • Greeting cards – $ 0.6 billion
E-commerce Holiday Shopping Trends Analysis 2023: Most purchased products on Halloween

Takeaways

  • We can expect the same or even a little higher this year
  • Online store owners should consider SEO optimizations for their landing pages and product pages to improve search visibility
  • Run targeted social media campaigns
  • Do a Halloween theme based website makeover and provide special discount sales.
  • Halloween shoppers spent mostly on costumes & candies and the least spent item is greeting cards.
  • Christmas retail sales increased in the US by 14.1% between 2020 and 2021 alone.
  • In 2021, retail holiday sales totaled $886.7 billion
  • Online promotions, discounts, and flash sales have a significant impact on driving sales during the Christmas season.
  • Christmas holiday shoppers start buying gifts and products in advance. A Facebook report shows that the shopping starts from the month of October itself. The peak purchase is in November.
Chrismas Holiday Shopping Trends Analysis 2023
Source: Meta
  • Nearly 67% of the users prefer to buy online and the shoppers prefer brick and mortar store is 66%. Clearly, the difference is very minimal.
  • The average American spending increased by 12.8% on Christmas presents between 2006 and 2022.
Chrismas Holiday Shopping Trends and Analysis 2023
Source: Zippia

Most purchased products on Christmas Eve

Clothes and accessories are the one leading the highest part of the sales in the Christmas holiday shopping. Here are the top product categories.

  • Clothes and accessories 73%
  • Foods and beverages – 70%
  • Toys and hobbies – 64%

Adobe’s holiday sales report gives even further insight into the products in each category that were selling hot during 2022 Christmas.

Most purchased products on Christmas Eve
Source: Adobe Holiday Shopping report

Takeaways

  • Start holiday sales as early as in the month of October. A Google survey revealed that holiday shoppers complete almost 21% of their shopping in the month of October itself.
  • Provide fast delivery options. Since a considerable amount of shoppers prefer in-store purchases, provide a flexible option like Buy Online Pick in Store to increase revenue.
  • 68% of the shoppers mentioned that pay more attention to emails for offers in this time period. Therefore, have a fail-proof email marketing campaign.

” As of mid-October, holiday shoppers globally had on average 21% of their holiday shopping complete”

Think with Google

Thanksgiving

  • Consumers are increasingly turning to online shopping to take advantage of the deals and discounts offered during the Thanksgiving season.
  • On Thanksgiving 2022, online shoppers spent a record $5.29 billion, a 2.9% increase year over year. 
  • One of the key factors influencing Thanksgiving shopping trends is the impact of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. 
  • In recent years, the lines have blurred, and consumers are now taking advantage of deals throughout the entire Thanksgiving weekend.
  • Black Friday accounted for $9.1 billion in online sales in 2022, while Cyber Monday generated $11.3 billion. 
E-commerce Holiday Shopping Trends Analysis 2023: Maximizing Sales during Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas - Tyche Softwares
Source: Practical eCommerce

Most purchased products on Christmas Eve

Although Thanksgiving Day gifts are not common or traditionally given, it is a good idea to bring a gift for the host or Hostess. Following are the most bought products during the Thanks Giving

  • Nintendo Switch
  • Roblox
  • God of War Ragnarök
  • Paw Patrol
  • Instapots

Devices Preferred for Online Shopping

Devices play a crucial role in online shopping and last year’s data shows more and more diversification in the use of devices for shopping. Let’s take a look at trends that help us understand what devices are preferred during the Halloween, Christmas, and Thanksgiving seasons. 

  • Research shows customers are more inclined to use mobile phones when they’re looking up questions to answer their products. 
Devices Preferred for Online Shopping
Source: Hubspot consumer trends report
  • Searching the internet, social media and YouTube ads are one of the top 7 product discovery channels.
Devices Preferred for Online Shopping
Source: Hubspot consumer trends report
  • According to Statista, mobile accounted for 74% of online visits and 63% of online sales during Halloween 2022.
E-commerce Holiday Shopping Trends Analysis 2023: Maximizing Sales during Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas - Tyche Softwares
  • Adobe reports that mobile devices accounted for 51% of all Cyber Week purchases in 2022, up from 46% the year before.
  • Mobile shopping and apps play a crucial role during Thanksgiving sales. 
  • The mobile accounted for 55% of online sales during Thanksgiving 2022.
  • The use of mobile for online sales increased by 8.3% in 2022 from the previous year.
  • Sales from mobile devices increased to 43% on Cyber Monday, from 40% the year before.
  • However, Adobe shows conversion rates are higher during festive seasons when consumers shop through the desktop. 
E-commerce Holiday Shopping Trends Analysis 2023: Maximizing Sales during Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas - Tyche Softwares
Source: Adobe Holiday Shopping report
  • Customers even tend to order more items when shopping from desktops when compared to phones and tablets.
E-commerce Holiday Shopping Trends Analysis 2023: Maximizing Sales during Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas - Tyche Softwares
Source: Adobe Holiday Shopping report

Apart from discounts, promotions, and theme-based inventories one major factor that make or break the deal is delivery options and delivery timing. No matter which holiday sales you are running, speedy delivery and multiple shipping options is what customer expect. Here are a few trends-

  • Speedy Deliveries: In a survey, 48% of consumers said they expect retailers to offer same-day delivery options during the holiday season. (Source: National Retail Federation)
  • Sustainability Focus: Ecommerce companies that offer sustainable packaging and delivery options have seen a 30% increase in customer loyalty. (Source: Deloitte)
  • Advanced Logistics Technologies: Over 60% of major retailers have invested in AI-driven logistics solutions to optimize their delivery routes during peak holiday periods. (Source: PwC)
  • Convenient Options: During the holiday season, 70% of shoppers prefer retailers that offer convenient options like curbside pickup and lockers. (Source: NRF)
E-commerce Holiday Shopping Trends Analysis 2023: Maximizing Sales during Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas - Tyche Softwares
Source: Adobe Holiday Shopping report

As you can see from the above report, people prefer expedited shipping and also prefer in-store pickup & curbside pickup.

The above trends show customers are excited about discounts and offers, especially during Thanksgiving and Christmas. By offering seasonal sales, discount codes, and online promotions, you can create:

  • Festive environment
  • Create a sense of urgency and scarcity

Some ideas to maximize on festive season with discounts:

  • Promote Early Bird Deals: 

Offer exclusive discounts and promotions to early shoppers, incentivizing them to make their purchases ahead of the rush. By providing enticing offers, you can capture the attention of consumers and encourage them to buy early.

E-commerce Holiday Shopping Trends Analysis 2023: Maximizing Sales during Halloween, Thanksgiving & Christmas - Tyche Softwares

As said earlier in the post, holiday shopper tends to start shopping earlier. In fact, retailers who held back on early discounts in the first two weeks of November saw a 5% lower sales. The above chart clearly shows that irrespective of the product category, the discount claims were higher in the month of October and gradually decreased towards the end of December.

  • Emphasize Free Shipping: 

Shipping and delivery play a crucial role in the overall online shopping experience. According to a study by Baymard Institute, high shipping costs are the leading cause of cart abandonment. Offer free shipping or discounted shipping rates during the season sale to encourage conversions and minimize cart abandonment rates. 

  • Provide Bundle Discounts:

Product bundling is a great way to get customers interested in trying out new products from your online store. It’s a simple strategy for generating extra revenue from each shopping basket. Holiday sales (and average order value) may be boosted by offering bundles of discounted items to shoppers.

Tools to use: Use Picreel and Tyche Software Plugins to create

  1. Discount pop-ups and lead pop-ups
  2. Discounts with messages
  3. Offer payment gateway discounts 

Personalization: According to a study by Accenture, 91% of consumers are more likely to shop with brands that provide relevant offers and recommendations.

Social Commerce: In 2021, the global social commerce market was estimated to be worth $89.4 billion, with projections of significant growth (Statista).

Live Streaming & Virtual Events: During the 2020 holiday season, live streaming shopping events saw a 90% increase in viewership compared to the previous year (Facebook IQ).

Influencer Collaborations: Nearly 70% of marketers believe that influencer marketing budgets will increase in 2023, showing the growing importance of influencer collaborations (Influencer Marketing Hub).

More Tips for E-commerce Businesses to Capitalize Holiday Sales

  • Utilize the Abandoned Cart Pro plugin for WooCommerce: Keep your customers from abandoning their carts with a plugin that sends automated email reminders to customers who didn’t complete the purchase. 
  • Offer Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) options: The use of BNPL by U.S. shoppers during Cyber Week increased by up to 5% from last year, indicating its popularity among consumers. Integrate BNPL services into your eCommerce platform and close more customer orders. 
  • Implement Payment Gateway-Based Fees and Discounts: Incentivize customers to choose specific payment options that benefit your business and increase conversions with the Payment Gateway-Based Fees and Discounts plugin for WooCommerce. It allows you to apply fees or offer discounts based on the selected payment method. 
  • Optimize your shipping and delivery processes: The holiday season means high shipping volumes and delayed deliveries. Partner with reliable shipping and logistics providers and make the most efforts to ensure smooth and timely deliveries during the holiday season. Tyche Softwares offers solutions for delivery, which can be beneficial in streamlining your shipping operations.
  • Enhance customer support: Strengthen your customer support team during the holiday season to handle increased inquiries about the order’s whereabouts and stock. While it may be frustrating during the holiday season due to high order volumes, providing prompt assistance and resolving issues promptly can improve customer satisfaction and encourage repeat purchases.

Conclusion:

Capitalizing on the holiday seasons of Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas in the e-commerce industry requires careful planning and preparation. Retailers should prioritize creating engaging and personalized customer experiences, incorporating festive themes and promotions that resonate with their target audience. Leverage data analytics and consumer insights to optimize product offerings and marketing strategies, ensuring maximum sales during these peak periods.

While the trends above may help you set up a strategy for the coming holiday season, know that retailers must embrace a mindset of continuous improvement by actively seeking and implementing customer feedback. Monitor customer satisfaction and address pain points promptly to enhance the overall shopping experience and build long-term loyalty. Moreover, fostering creativity and innovation is key to staying ahead of the competition and capturing consumer interest in future holiday seasons. 

Sources: Hubspot & Bradwatch report, Adobe holiday shopping trends report, National Retail federation report, Deloitte, Statista, Meta, Think with Google.

Browse more in: Ecommerce, How to Increase Sales

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