Survey: BOPIS, brand values can lead to happy retailer holidays
Many consumers are scaling back their holiday plans, but retailers can still capture their spending.
Marketing technology and consumer engagement firm Valassis recently conducted a survey of 1,000 U.S. consumers about the upcoming holiday season. Three-quarters of respondents said their plans to attend a holiday gathering will be impacted by pandemic-related concerns.
However, half of respondents still plan to attend or host a holiday get-together in person this year, although 38% reported there will be fewer guests than usual. Many holiday budgets will scale back as well, but respondents have experienced varying impacts from the pandemic.
For example, while 36% of respondents will decrease their holiday hosting budget, 16% plan to spend more. And when it comes to holiday gifting, 15% of respondents anticipate spending more time and money.
According to Valassis analysis, consumers who are in a position to spend as much or more on the holidays than they have in the past will look to splurge in 2020. Additionally, more than half (56%) of respondents, including 77% of those aged 25 to 34, are likely to treat themselves with unplanned purchases during their holiday shopping.
Looking at ways to attract customers in this unusually challenging environment, the survey finds that about three in 10 (29%) respondents said they plan to use BOPIS during their holiday shopping this year, with 14% expecting to use it for the first time. Those looking to embrace this service will do so for a variety of reasons: avoiding physical stores because of COVID-19 concerns (34%), shipping costs (25%), delays in arrival of items (19%), and in-store lines (20%).
During the pandemic, Valassis analysts have seen more shoppers test BOPIS or use it more frequently. According to Valassis, the reasons for doing so will continue into the holiday season, especially as stores may be more crowded amid the rush to purchase gifts and other holiday items, and consumers are on deadline for when they need these items by. Valassis advises that retailers not integrating online and offline channels to provide BOPIS will miss out on potential holiday sales.
Almost four in 10 (38%) respondents plan to intentionally conduct holiday shopping at a business either owned by a person of color or that promotes diversity. Valassis advises that retailers avoid “virtue signaling,” but instead be authentic to their brand’s values and have a strategy around that, rather than making not a one-off donation or social media post to look the part.