Consumers may be lacking a sense of urgency

Consumers were slow to get started on online holiday shopping although 36% plan to pay for expedited shipping in the final week of the season

In the last edition of our BOXpoll survey, we found that only some consumers had shifted their holiday shopping earlier, in response to carriers and retailers trying to ‘flatten the curve’ of shipping volumes this peak season. By tracking consumers’ survey responses weekly we've found consumers may be shopping even later, with a greater number now expecting to finish their shopping the week before Christmas. 

Carriers are moving holiday shipping cutoff dates earlier in anticipation of delivery delays this peak. Are consumers taking notice?

  • Most consumers (63%) have faith that retailers will follow through on their promised delivery dates.
    • But more than 1 in 4 consumers (28%) admit to feeling anxious and rushed because of earlier-than-normal holiday cutoff dates.
  • Perhaps more critically, nearly half (43%) plan to stop shopping online after cutoff dates—indicating that consumers are increasingly aware that delays are likely.
    • Risk-averse baby boomers are most likely (49%) to stop shopping by the deadline, far more likely than Gen Z (35%).
    • Parents with more than one child are less likely to abide by cutoff dates (36%) versus those with one (43%) or no (44%) children.
  • That said, more than a third (36%) of consumers report plans to pay to expedite shipping if they miss cutoff dates.
    • Here again, age is a factor: about half of both Gen Z (52%) and Millennials (48%) say they will pay for faster shipping, compared to 38% of Gen X and only 21% of Baby Boomers.
    • Others who are more likely to procrastinate and then upgrade shipping: Urban dwellers (42%), those earning $100K+ (41%),(49%).

After decades of conditioning consumers to expect the best deals to happen between Black Friday and Christmas, it may not be surprising to find many consumers have a cavalier attitude toward holiday shipping cutoff dates. For the latest on tracking the timing of consumer holiday shopping, come back to our BOXpoll site each week through peak.

BOXpollTM by Pitney Bowes, a weekly consumer survey on current events, culture,and ecommerce logistics. Conducted by Pitney Bowes with Morning Consult //2094 US consumers surveyed November 2020.© Copyright 2020 Pitney Bowes Inc.

Get the BOXpoll inside scoop
Pitney Bowes is surveying consumers on a wide variety of ecommerce topics each and every week, and publishing the best of our findings on every month.
Loading form content…