A new Intuit QuickBooks survey shows that 42 percent of U.S. consumers, roughly 109 million people, expect to spend more this holiday season than last year, with nearly half of consumers expected to shop 50% or more at small businesses. These findings and more are from Intuit Inc., maker of TurboTax, Credit Karma, QuickBooks and Mailchimp. Featured in the QuickBooks Holiday Shopping Report.
Overall, overall consumer spending at small businesses is expected to increase 42 percent compared to last holiday season. Nearly 3 in 5 consumers believe that shopping at small businesses is a less stressful experience than shopping at large retailers. This is true despite the volatility in the market and the climate of inflation and interest rate fluctuations.
The survey of 6,500 US adults highlights optimism among consumers this holiday season, shedding light on the opportunities ahead for small business owners and what they can do to contain consumer spending.
Consumers are eager to add less business spending.
According to the findings, 94% of respondents plan to buy gifts this holiday season, so most consumers are into gifting this year. For many consumers, shopping less will be a priority as they expect to spend about $485 at small businesses this season, up from $342 last year.
What caused the increase in holiday spending and support for less shopping? Job bonuses and savings.
More than a third of respondents (34%) are expecting a holiday bonus, and more than two-thirds (69%) of them believe it will encourage them to spend more money on small businesses. Additionally, nearly three-quarters (70%) of consumers shared that they started saving for holiday gift shopping in September or earlier this year.
Our research shows that consumers want to support small businesses – and plan to spend a total of 42% more this season compared to last – but there are key issues that business owners need to assess in order to maximize sales and win over customers in time. The holidays,” said Director of Product Management, Business, Intuit QuickBooks. “Small businesses are more likely to reach consumers by offering seamless checkout experiences, automating manual tasks to give customers more time, and selling across multiple sales channels online.”
Customized solutions to help small businesses sell more this holiday season
The QuickBooks platform helps small businesses better manage their finances and business operations year-round, with a set of integrated tools ideal for holiday sales planning and management. Intuit Mailchimp, an email marketing and automation platform, helps small businesses find and engage customers through email, social media, landing pages and ads. Together, these services help small businesses stay on top of their seasonal planning, management and marketing and make the most of the holiday shopping season ahead. Here are some tips that small businesses can implement to optimize sales.*
- Consider the Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) model: Offering flexibility and the appeal of short-term interest rates, BNPL has the potential to attract new customers and retain loyal customers. Three out of five (60%) consumers plan to use BNPL for holiday shopping this year, and demand for this is particularly high among younger Gen Z consumers.
- To provide a seamless browsing experience, see: Nearly two-thirds (63%) of consumers say they shop more at small businesses that offer contactless or mobile payments. To improve customer checkout, small businesses can implement integrated payment solutions such as QuickBooks Payments, accepting customer payments through online invoicing, mobile payment apps, and physical card readers the way they want to pay.**
- Offer holiday discounts to drive sales. Whenever possible, small businesses should look to offer special holiday discounts. 94 percent of consumers said they compare prices between small businesses and large retailers, and half said getting a better deal at a large retailer would keep them from buying from a small business. With the help of marketing platforms like Mailchimp, small businesses can turn their marketing data into personalized messaging to reach customers with offers at the right time.
- Encourage shoppers to support local retailers by: The report shows that consumers want to support local small businesses, with nearly two-thirds (62%) more likely to buy small if the business is in their community. Remember your local connections to consumers and your commitment to high quality and service. One way small businesses can do this is through email and social marketing campaigns.
- Make sure your inventory is available before the busy season: The holiday shopping season, which started earlier than ever last year, has consumers expecting the same this year. The report shows that most consumers plan to start shopping in November, with Small Business Saturday (November 25) and Black Friday (November 24) being the top shopping holidays for small businesses. As the holiday shopping season begins to reach its peak, business owners need to make sure they have tools to easily track their sales and inventory.
QuickBooks has created a special holiday hub to help small business owners thrive and grow with the tools and resources they need. For more information, small businesses can visit https://quickbooks.intuit.com/r/holidays/