Gen Z May Be Most Generous Gift Givers This Holiday Season, Says Shopify

SurveysOct 17, 2023

Gen Z May Be Most Generous Gift Givers This Holiday Season, Says Shopify

The seasonal survey asked consumers how, when, and where they’ll shop for holiday gifts.

Wrapped holiday gift boxes
Conducted in September, the first Shopify-Gallup Holiday Shopping Pulse survey of the season asked 1,761 consumers about their shopping plans for the upcoming holidays.
New York—Ahead of the holidays, e-commerce company Shopify asked consumers about their seasonal spending plans.

The Shopify-Gallup Holiday Shopping Pulse is a series of surveys conducted among U.S. consumers to gauge how they’re feeling about the upcoming season.

For the first survey in September, Shopify asked consumers how, when, and where they’ll be shopping for gifts.

From plans to “shop small” to the top gifts, here’s what the 1,761 respondents said.

Despite the tough economic climate, most shoppers won’t cut back on their spending.

Consumers are battling rising interest rates and prices, but it hasn’t put a damper on the holiday spirit.

Nearly three in four (74 percent) said they plan to spend the same or more on holiday gifts this year compared with last year.

Gen Z is ready to spend, especially on social media.

The adult Gen Zers, ages 18 to 29, will be the “most resilient” spenders this year, said Shopify.

Thirty-seven percent of the generation plan to spend more than last year, which is nearly double the average across all age groups.

This age group also was the most likely to shop for holiday gifts on social media platforms.

Nearly half (48 percent) plan to buy at least some gifts through social media compared with one-third of all shoppers.

Get those holiday deals started early.

Gen Z shoppers also will be the most likely to respond to holiday deals, said Shopify.

Nearly half (48 percent) said they would “probably” or “definitely” start shopping earlier if retailers held holiday deals and promotions.

“That’s a wake-up call for retailers to make better use of earlier deals specifically to cater to this group,” said Shopify.

Though other age groups do respond to earlier promotions, the average across all age groups was lower at 28 percent.

As for when holiday shopping will start, 41 percent of respondents plan to start shopping this month or earlier, followed by 39 percent in November, and 20 percent in December.

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“Shopping small” is still in fashion, as is shopping online.

Nearly one in four shoppers (23 percent) ranked shopping with small and local businesses as the No.1 reason they would choose one retailer over another.

Shopify recommended retailers take advantage of this preference by creating promotions for Small Business Saturday, which falls on Nov. 25 this year.

Though brick-and-mortar stores will see their share of holiday shoppers, the “lion’s share” of holiday shopping is expected to be done online, according to the survey.

Nearly everyone surveyed (93 percent) said they plan to buy “some” gifts online, while about half (47 percent) will buy “all” or “most” of their gifts online.

People are in the holiday spirit.

Shopify also uses its data to track monthly retail trends. In September, as shoppers shifted from summer to fall, it highlighted a few trending items.

“Fall and winter holiday items were top sellers as people got ready to celebrate,” said Shopify.

In time for Halloween, costume sales were up 262 percent month-over-month, with mask sales up 60 percent.

Shoppers also were interested in holiday decorations, up 76 percent from August. Sales of holiday stockings (up 98 percent) and wreaths (up 101 percent) also were on the rise.

For those doing early holiday shopping, tech and toys were at the top of the list. 

Sales of play vehicles (toy trucks, toy cars, etc.) were up 178 percent month-over-month, while phone and tablet accessories, like tripods, also were trending, with sales up 225 percent.

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