Holiday Shopping 2021: Finding “Just Right”

July 28, 2021
Escalent - Holiday Shopping 2021: Finding Just Right

It may be July, but retailers around the world are feeling the crunch as the 2021 holiday shopping season looms just around the corner. Many are working overtime to identify the strategies that will make this critical period a success after a sideways 2020—from marketing and communications to pricing and sales. Chief among those considerations should be a cogent multi-channel approach to selling and, where brick-and-mortar retail is possible, extensive safety protocols to keep consumers comfortable and confident.

Long before Black Friday arrives, consumers will be evaluating their holiday gift shopping options. This season will require some creativity from retailers: Consumers are split down the middle when it comes to choosing between shopping online—as many did in 2020—and choosing to browse in brick-and-mortar stores. Those are the findings of our latest Consumer & Retail study, Sink or Soar During the 2021 Holidays: Redefine Your Brand and Gain Market Share.

The piece confirms what many have long speculated—consumer habits are changing, and maybe permanently. However, what’s not been as clear for retailers is just what those changes will look like. We now have answers: 44% of consumers in our survey said COVID-19 has changed how they prefer to shop. However, similar to how they shopped during the pandemic, consumers on average plan to do 48% of their holiday shopping this winter in brick-and-mortar stores, and 53% via online retail or through curbside pickup services.

Such an even split presents unique challenges for retailers, who will need to intimately understand their customers to know how best to position their holiday sales. In all but very specific circumstances, a “one-size-fits-all” approach to sales—from price to channel—poses a risk of missing out on a large segment of a consumer base and is likely to fail most companies. Similarly, offering every customer every option under the sun could result in dilution or confusion. Each company must have the actionable intelligence to craft a curated strategy to maximize engagement.

To learn more about your customers and what they’ll look for this holiday shopping season, click the button below to dive into the full white paper. Better yet, drop us a line—we’d love to help craft your winning strategy this year.

Download Sink or Soar During the 2021 Holidays: Redefine Your Brand and Gain Market Share

Greg Mishkin
Vice President, Telecom, Consumer & Retail

Greg is a vice president in the Telecommunications and Consumer & Retail industry groups but works across all divisions and is in high demand as a speaker and author in the market research and telecom fields. Greg's responsibilities include managing and growing key client relationships while maintaining a special focus on the integration of large-scale behavioral data with Escalent's traditional market research solutions. He is known for turning extremely complex data into actionable insights and turning data into competitive advantages for his clients. Currently, he has seven patents related to data-focused market research methodologies. Greg earned a master’s degree in business administration from Kennesaw State University in Kennesaw, GA; a master’s degree in clinical psychology from University of Hartford in Hartford, CT and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Union College in Schenectady, NY. When not working, Greg can usually be found enjoying his new-found empty nest while frequently visiting his twins in college to watch their performances in musical theatre, piano, percussion, symphony and the like.

Escalent | Blayk Puckett
Blayk Puckett
Research Analyst, Consumer & Retail

Blayk is a research analyst on Escalent’s Consumer & Retail team. He joined the company in 2019 and brings a fresh perspective, having studied marketing and data analytics at the University of Central Arkansas while working in performance arts, retail, and consumer technology. He applies his education, interests, and prior work experience to a variety of project engagements across the Consumer & Retail, Tech and Telecom teams, and works closely with clients to develop and execute meaningful research that answers their toughest questions. Blayk’s love of learning and ever-curious nature has led him to not only seek out a better understanding of the complex analyses behind the data, but also to find ways to translate those same esoteric concepts to help inform strategic business decisions. When he takes his market research hat off, Blayk spends his free time performing as a juggler and magician, and he can often be found on the weekends entertaining at a variety of events. His wife is also a juggler, and at their wedding, they chose to replace the traditional first dance with a “first juggle” as a surprise for their guests.