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Press Release

Publicis Sapient Announces Results of New Global Survey “Cyber Monday, Unwrapped: How Retailers Can Win Big This Holiday Season”

Survey shows most consumers will purchase from retailers that offer the best deal over those they know or trust; 74% of consumers said they prefer to buy online during the holidays; more than half of consumers surveyed say they’re comfortable giving retailers access to personal information in exchange for a good deal.

Are consumers choosing discounts over loyalty?  Will online ordering persist post pandemic?  How much do physical stores still matter?  Digital business transformation consultancy Publicis Sapient announced in August 2021 the results of its new global survey titled “Cyber Monday, Unwrapped: How Retailers Can Win Big This Holiday Season.” The report, which incorporates data collected from an online survey launched in June 2021, includes 1,000 consumers from the US, UK, France and Sweden.

“As retailers hope for a return to normalcy this holiday season, consumers have signaled they’re ready to spend. Retailers must be ready with the right digital experience, personalized deals and offers, and resilient commerce platforms that can handle what we believe will be a record-breaking year,” said Hilding Anderson, Head of Retail Strategy, North America at Publicis Sapient. “We saw strong evidence in this data that consumers will continue the post-COVID shift towards digital as the first and primary shopping channel – 74% of consumers said that they prefer to buy online during the holiday season. We also saw that some sectors, such as electronics retailers, will have even more digital traffic. We expect this year that online ordering and ‘buy online, pick up in store’ will continue to be very strong as COVID-shaped behaviors are sustained albeit at slightly lower levels.”

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Global External Communications Team

Key findings from the survey include:
 

  •  Amazon is the Most Popular Holiday Shopping Destination

    • 81% of US respondents shopped with Amazon from Black Friday through Cyber Monday last year, and over half shopped at Walmart (58%), followed by Target (46%) and Best Buy (41%).

    • Amazon was also the top retailer in other markets from Black Friday through Cyber Monday:  UK (89%) and France (77%).

    • The retailer shopped most in Sweden is H&M (52%).

 

  •  Consumers Choose Discounts Over Loyalty

    • Most consumers will purchase from retailers that offer the best deal even if this is their first purchase with them (76%) rather than sticking with retailers they know or trust regardless of who has the best deal (24%).
 
  •  A Value Exchange Between Consumers and Retailers

    • More than half of consumers surveyed (54%) say that they’re comfortable or very comfortable giving retailers access to personal information in exchange for a good deal; only 13% say they are uncomfortable or very uncomfortable. Consumers are most comfortable with sharing contact information (40%), loyalty program memberships (38%) and preferences (34%).
 
  • Most Electronic Goods Purchases Will Happen Online

    • 71% of consumers expect to make the majority of their purchases from electronics goods retailers online rather than in a physical store, which is the highest percentage of online purchases reported across all retailer types.
 
  • Consumers Still Value Black Friday and Cyber Monday

    • 56% of consumers agree or strongly agree that they plan to shop the entire weekend of Black Friday through Cyber Monday this year.

    • 40% of consumers expect the best deals to be available over the Black Friday through Cyber Monday weekend. 
 
  • Gen X Versus Gen Z versus Millennial Versus Baby Boomer Shoppers

    • Retailer Options:  In the US, millennials are significantly more likely than are gen X and baby boomers to have shopped at Costco, Gap and Target.  In the UK, gen Z and millennials are significantly more likely than are gen X and baby boomers to have shopped at B&M.  In Sweden, gen Z are significantly more likely than are millennials, gen X and baby boomers to have shopped at IKEA.

    • Delivery options:  In the US, a significantly higher percentage of baby boomers typically accept the delivery time associated with free shipping when compared with younger generations.  In the UK, a significantly higher percentage of gen X and baby boomers typically accept the delivery time associated with free shipping when compared with younger generations, significantly fewer baby boomers paid extra for shipping when compared to younger generations and a significantly higher percentage of gen Z consumers report that they have purchased online and picked up in-store one time when compared with older generations.

    • Returning Items:  In the US, significantly fewer millennials report that they did not need to return any items when compared to other generations.  In the UK, significantly fewer gen Z and millennial consumers report that they did not need to return any items when compared to older generations.  In France, significantly fewer gen Z and millennial consumers report that they did not need to return any items when compared to older generations.  In Sweden, significantly fewer gen Z consumers report that they did not need to return any items when compared to older generations.

    • Best discounts:  In the US, significantly fewer gen Z consumers consider a flat dollar amount off to be the best discount when compared to older generations.  In the UK, significantly fewer millennial consumers consider a free gift with purchase to be the best discount when compared to older generations.  In Sweden, a significantly higher percentage of gen Z consumers consider a free gift with purchase to be the best discount when compared to older generations.

    • Reasons for buying online:  In the US, a significantly higher percentage of gen X and baby boomers say avoiding crowds would make them most likely to buy online when compared to younger generations.  In the UK, a significantly higher percentage of baby boomers say free shipping would make them most likely to buy online when compared to younger generations.  In France, a significantly higher percentage of gen Z and millennials say offering same day delivery would make them most likely to buy online when compared to older generations.  In Sweden, a significantly higher percentage of baby boomers say discounted items compared to in-store prices would make them most likely to buy online when compared to younger generations.

    • Giving retailers access to your personal information:  In the US, a significantly higher percentage of gen X and baby boomers are uncomfortable or very uncomfortable with giving retailers access to personal information when compared to younger generations.  In the UK, a significantly higher percentage of baby boomers are uncomfortable or very uncomfortable with giving retailers access to personal information when compared to younger generations.

    • Buying additional items in store:  In the US, millennials are significantly more likely than are older generations to buy additional items during their in-store visit when they use the in-store pickup option.  In the UK, baby boomers are significantly less likely than are younger generations to buy additional items during their in-store visit when they use the in-store pickup option.  In France, baby boomers are significantly less likely than are younger generations to buy additional items during their in-store visit when they use the in-store pickup option.
     
     
     
  • Female Versus Male Consumers

    • In the US, a significantly higher percentage of male consumers say no sales tax or an easy return process would make them most likely to buy online when compared to female consumers.

    • In the UK, a significantly higher percentage of male consumers say an easy-to-use website would make them most likely to buy online when compared to female consumers. A significantly higher percentage of female consumers say avoiding crowds would make them most likely to buy online when compared to male consumers.

    • In France, a significantly higher percentage of male consumers say free shipping would make them most likely to buy online when compared to female consumers.

 

  • Consumers’ Delivery Concerns Remain

    • Over half (61%) of respondents are very or somewhat concerned about receiving their items in time for the holidays when they shop online for Black Friday through Cyber Monday this year.

 

Other Key Findings From The Survey: Online Shopping Versus Physical Stores

  • 74% of consumers prefer to buy online during the holiday season, even if a retailer offers the same products via e-commerce or in the physical store.

  • 69% of consumers said that they plan to visit 2-5 online retailers during the weekend of Black Friday through Cyber Monday this year.

 

While online shopping will dominate from Black Friday through Cyber Monday, stores are still a key element of consumers’ holiday shopping journey.

  • 55% of consumers reported that they agree or strongly agree that they sometimes go to a physical store to check out an item before they buy it online.

  • When it comes to department stores in particular, 51% of consumers expect to make most of their purchases in a physical store.

 

Stores can also provide an efficient and convenient way to make sure that consumers receive their items in time for the holidays through curbside pickup and “buy online, pick up in store.”

  • 77% of consumers said they have purchased their items online and picked them up in-store, and 55% said they have done this more than once for their holiday shopping.

  • 65% of those who bought items online and picked them up in store said they are somewhat or very likely to purchase more items when they go in the store to pick up their order.

 

The full report can be viewed here https://www.publicissapient.com/insights/cyber-monday-unwrapped.

About the Report

Publicis Sapient’s “Cyber Monday, Unwrapped: How Retailers Can Win Big This Holiday Season” report explores consumers’ holiday shopping journeys the weekend of Black Friday through Cyber Monday. Shopper data was collected through an online survey sent to 1,000 participants across France, Sweden, the US and UK in June 2021. Respondents are ages 18-65, 40/60 male and female identifying, and all were open to shopping on Cyber Monday. Publicis Sapient partnered with McGuire Research to complete this survey.