The National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics released their annual predictions for consumer spending over Thanksgiving weekend. They estimate that 69 percent of Americans—164 million people—will do at least some holiday shopping over the five-day period, which spans from Thanksgiving Day to Cyber Monday (including Black Friday).
The annual study asked 7,439 consumers about their shopping plans and was conducted from Oct. 31 to Nov. 7.
It revealed that 20 percent of Americans plan to shop on Thanksgiving Day (32 million), 70 percent will shop on Black Friday (115 million), and 43 percent will shop on Small Business Saturday (71 million)—with 76 percent of that group shopping specifically to support small businesses.
Twenty-one percent of U.S. consumers are expected to shop Sunday (35 million), while 48 percent are forecast to shop Cyber Monday (78 million).
Thirty-one percent of respondents said they won’t do any shopping over the weekend, with 52 percent of that group saying they don’t find it enjoyable and 51 percent noting that they never shop Thanksgiving weekend. Still, twenty-seven percent of those who said they weren’t shopping said that “a good sale or discount” on something they want could lure them into a store.
Among those who plan to shop, 66 percent said they’re doing so “to take advantage of deals and promotions retailers will offer,” while 26 percent said Thanksgiving weekend shopping is a tradition (and one they plan to continue). Twenty-three percent said frankly that they’re shopping because “it’s something to do over the holiday weekend.”
An estimated 56 percent of U.S. consumers have already started their holiday shopping, according to the National Retail Federation—but only 12 percent of shoppers have finished even half of the shopping they plan to do (2 percent of respondents said they’ve already finished their shopping).
“While the utility of the weekend will continue to draw shoppers into stores and online to efficiently and inexpensively check off their lists, we’re also seeing consumers report tradition and the opportunity to partake in holiday cheer as reasons for shopping, too,” said Prosper principal analyst Pam Goodfellow, in a statement. “By now, people know what sort of deals they can expect to see during the weekend and are budgeting for them accordingly, and in many cases, expertly.”