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Enticing customers this holiday season is more important – and more challenging – than ever before as the economy continues to struggle and consumers remain very cautious. Bill Tancer, Experian Marketing Services' Head of Global Research, has been examining holiday shopping trends based on Experian data and has identified interesting shifts in consumer behavior:
-- According to the Experian Consumer Expectation Index, consumer economic sentiment has reached its lowest point since spring 2009 – yet visits to the Experian Hitwise Retail 500 index are up 17% over 2010
-- The top days for visits to retail websites this season will be: Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the day after Christmas
-- Free shipping queries have been declining the last 3 years, but since February 2011 there has been upward trend in searches
-- For email offers, 30% is the new 20% as marketers leaned towards higher offers throughout the 2010 holiday—expect the trend of deeper discounts to continue for holiday 2011
Bottom line is that consumers are looking for bargains even sooner this year and marketers need to adjust their strategies now.
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