Why Shopping Online Will Be Big This Holiday Season
Traditionally, the December holiday season is the most important part of the year for many businesses, especially those in retail. But so far, predictions aren't that rosy for this year's profits. High gas prices, high cost of living, and low consumer confidence are expected to put a damper on the holiday shopping plans for many. But that's not entirely true for everyone. You can expect online shopping to be bigger than ever. Why? Let me outline a few reasons why online retail sites like Amazon, to small home-based operations will be raking in the cash in the weeks ahead.
1. Very few are going to blow off the holidays, even if funds are low. And most people will buy cheaper gifts rather than cross some loved ones off their shopping list. When people don't have a lot of disposable cash, they look for low prices. Suddenly bargain hunting becomes the order of the day. Expect masses of North Americans to flock to online retail sites in ever greater numbers. The super-low overhead of online retail allows sites to offer wide selection at the lowest prices on Earth. After a decade of Internet shopping, millions of people are now fully aware of this truth. Expect a very large percentage of them to purchase some or all of their gifts online.
2. Gas is still high and may go even higher in the weeks ahead. This means wading through clogged streets filled with holiday shoppers is something most of our pocket books just don't want to go through. High gas prices also mean paying for online purchases to be shipped to you is no longer an imposition. Many will be thinking "The 3 bucks for shipping is a lot less than the $20 I'll spend driving all over town to the malls."
3. People are working harder than ever. The demands of one, two, even three jobs while taking care of family is leaving millions of Americans will zero free time. This means they need to sandwich holiday shopping into their lunch break or even during a slow period at work. Yes, expect these folks to also do their shopping online in unprecedented numbers. The bottom line is clear: if you're a consumer, give yourself a needed break and do your holiday gift buying online. If you're an online retailer, get ready for a holiday buying season you may not soon forget.