E-commerce merchants who wait until November to launch their holiday promotions may miss out on as much as 65 percent of online consumers who have either begun their shopping already or plan to begin between now and October. Many retailers were caught off guard by last year’s early start to the season, and a survey conducted in May 2010 by Google and OTX indicates the same pattern will continue this year.
Twenty-one percent of U.S. Internet shoppers had already started making 2010 holiday purchases online by May, and another 14 percent reported that they would begin shopping by August. Twelve percent said they would start shopping online in September, followed by 18 percent who were going to begin in October. That makes a total of 65 percent as compared to the 35 percent of shoppers who reported that they would begin their online shopping in November or December.
The numbers continue the trend started last holiday season, which left many e-commerce merchants left out in the cold when November rolled around. According to comScore, online spending has exhibited quarterly growth of 10 and 9 percent respectively in the first half of 2010, indicating that this will be a stronger holiday season for retailers overall – but those who wait too long may miss out on some of the rewards.