A new survey has found that most people plan to begin their holiday shopping well before their turkey dinner — 7:16 a.m. EST on Thanksgiving Day to be exact. According to Groupon‘s second annual Black Friday shopping trends survey, the new early morning time is more than eight hours earlier than last year’s start time of 3:29 p.m.
While people are starting their shopping earlier, they’re not exactly looking forward to it. In fact, listening to an annoying children’s song on repeat, getting gum stuck in one’s hair and passing gas during a job interview were just a few things people would rather do than deal with store crowds this weekend.
So, it’s not surprising that people are choosing to shop online over going to a brick-and-mortar store, by a two-to-one margin. In addition, many plan to go to small businesses because of their unique selections, the money spent stays in the community and these stores offer a more personalized customer experience.
Holiday shoppers are expected to spend more this season. With strong income growth, increased customer confidence and low unemployment, U.S. holiday sales may top $1 trillion this year.
As eMarketer Principal Analyst Andrew Lipsman said in a statement, “While eCommerce will continue to see strong double-digit gains, brick-and-mortar retail should be a [particularly] bright spot this holiday season … retailers are luring in shoppers with remodeled stores, streamlined checkout and options to buy online, pick up in-store.”
The news comes as a recent survey from the National Retail Federation (NRF) found that consumers are expected to spend an average of $1,007.24 in the upcoming holiday season. The figure marks a 4.1 percent increase from last year, when consumers said they would spend an average of $967.13, according to the NRF.
NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said in a press release in October, “Confidence is near an all-time high, unemployment is the lowest we’ve seen in decades and take-home wages are up. All of that is reflected in consumers’ buying plans.”