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July, 2024

Holiday season consumption: 55% of Aussie consumers to start gift shopping by October

User-generated content platform, Bazaarvoice, has published its Holiday Season Shopping Behaviour Report, revealing that 55% of Australian consumers will begin their holiday shopping by October. 37% will begin gift shopping by September, and 23% by August or earlier.

Despite the significant number of early movers, the majority of Australians (68%) shop between October and December, with November being the most critical month for sales (28%), followed by December (21%) and October (19%).

The report, which provides insights into Australian consumer shopping habits ahead of the holiday season, draws on the responses of over 8,000 consumers globally, including over 1,000 Australians.

Its findings also reveals that 51% of Australians plan to maintain their 2023 spending levels in 2024, while 26% intend to spend less. Physical stores remain the most popular starting point for holiday shopping in Australia (28%), followed by search engines (24%) and brand/retailer websites (24%).

The report indicates a level of distrust among Australian consumers towards influencer recommendations during the holiday season, with 46% expressing scepticism. Furthermore, 32% of Australians begin their holiday shopping before the last quarter of the year, with 11% starting from April to July. A significant 62% of Australians feel that showcasing holiday items before October is premature.

“Our data indicates that while it’s critical to start holiday campaign planning early, marketers must balance their strategies to avoid overwhelming consumers. Now is the time to refine your approach to capture the early birds while maintaining a strong presence throughout the holiday season,” said Managing Director of Bazaarvoice APAC, Kate Musgrove.

The report also highlights that 37% of Australians prefer video content during the holiday season, with a preference for videos that are 1-5 minutes long (30%), closely followed by videos that are a minute or less (26%). A total of 35% of Australians find dynamic pricing strategies, such as flash sales, non-influential.

“Due to the holiday season not being a primary period for content creator recommendations to influence consumers, retailers need to work extra hard during this time to ensure any messaging shared on the brand’s behalf is authentic,” Musgrove said. “Working with influencers that are genuine endorsers of the brand is one solution for swaying shopper trust.”

Only 22% of Australians do most holiday shopping on online retail sites, and 63% are less inclined to write reviews for holiday gifts. These insights provide valuable guidance for marketers and retailers planning their strategies for the upcoming holiday season.