• INDIVIDUAL ADULT HOLIDAY BUYERS will spend over $800 this season growing 9% (over 2013). Almost ¾ of all holiday spending is devoted to gifting.
    • FEMALES’ increased spending is estm at 7%. v MALES at 6.5%
    • Those 35 & OLDER will grow their holiday spending b/t 11% & 12%.
    • ELDERS (65+) will grow their spending by almost 17%.


    • 71% of MILLENIALS will self buy or self They will be selfers.
    • 61% of those 35-44 YRS, 52% of BOOMERS & 39% of ELDERS will self gift.


    • 67% of holiday shoppers have smartphones with 70% of MEN & 64% of WOMEN as owners.
    • 85% MILLENNIALS & 40% of ELDERS own “smarties”.
      • 83% of MILLENNIALS will be doing research with “smarties”.
      • 34% of MILLENNIALS will be buying using their smartphones.
      • 34% of MILLENNIALS will be redeeming “smartie” coupons.


    • For the 1st time at least ½ of holiday buyers will buy online AND it will be the preferred shopping venue this holiday seasons. WOW!
    • About 6 in 10 of the holiday shoppers from 18-44 will buy online


As the US’s biggest generation EVER, MILLENIALS will be the darlings of retailers this holiday season. Although they will spend less than any other age group, retailers will invest heavily in their youthfulness and potential. MILLENIALS will do more selfing, smartphone researching, buying and coupon redemption than any other age group. They also will do more online buying than anyone else. Having said that, BOOMERS and ELDERS will spend more, a lot more (BOOMERS & ELDERS will spend 1/3± more and those from 35-44 will spend almost 50% more. While holiday shopper features very good pitches, holiday shopping/buying is a hitter’s game. BATTER$ UP!)





WHO is going to be the anti-Grinch who $ave$ XMA$ 2014? Will it be Women, Millennials, Boomers, the “X” Generation, Hispanics, African Americans, Asian Americans, the Upper Class, the Middle Class, the Family, Selfers (not to be confused with Selfies), “Frozen”, iPhones, Playstation 4s, Call of Duty (2014) smartwatches, etc! WHO is going to save XMA$ 2014, WHO? A recent release by Nielsen & USA2Day stated that MINORITIES will spend more (% increase) this holiday season than non-minorities. This enhanced spending is led by African Americans, Hispanics & Asian Americans (in that order). Accordingly they will ALL outspend the avg holiday spender. Given this insight, we analyzed NRF’s data on holiday spenders (by comparing genders, incomes & age brackets over key questions). We found:


OVERALL     According to the NRF the avg holiday spender will increase spending by 9% ($804.42 in 2014 vs $737.69 in 2013. (For those who see a conflict b/t the total increase of holiday spending of +4.6% based on 2014’s expected total holiday spend of $619.9 B and the per spender increase of +9%, we note that there is much holiday spending that occurs beyond the jurisdiction of the individual adult spender such as by bizes, diff orgs, under 18 spenders, etc).



GENDER      MALE spending grew by 6.5% ($833.57 in 2014 vs $782.69 in 2013) while FEMALE spending will grow by 11.7% WOW! ($776.83 in 2014 vs $695.65 in 2013) FEMALES will lead the way!


INCOME      Spenders whose income is <$50K are expected to spend 1% more this yr ($516.95 vs $511.80) while those who make 50K & more will grow their spending by 4.6% ($1,055.39 in 2014 vs $1,008.64 in 2013).


AGE            The largest generation in the US’s history (MILLENIALS) has been postulated as a possible solution/savior to the Xmas 2014’s shopping/buying season if for any reason a shortfall might occur.


  • As for the MILLENIAL $avior (18±-34± yrs), they have actually indicated (by NRF data) that they are going to spend less this holiday season and not more ($640.30 in 2014 vs $647.12 in 2013 [-1.1%])!


  • Those from 35-44 YRS said they are going to spend $948.37 this yr vs $852.26 last yr with a robust increase of 3%.


  • Our mostly BOOMERa categories of 45-54 & 55-64 yrs (45-64) will avg spending $835.04 this yr vs $746.86 in ’13 (an increase of 8%) with ELDERS (64% more) growing their holiday spending by a surreal 16.8% ($852.38 vs $729.79). WOW!! WOW!!



a  While “Boomers” in 2014 are from 50 to 68 YRS, we fully embraced 4564 YRS w/o parsing out those from 45-49 yrs b/c they’re too young to be BOOMERS AND w/o including those from 6468 YRS b/c the older category contains many, many more folks than just those from 64 to 68 YEARS.



CONCLUSION Given the data presented above on holiday spending w/o further info, enhanced Xmas spending is most likely to come from FEMALES and from those 35 YRS & OLDER!!!


$t $elfwhere


There is some thought that holiday buyers who buy for themselves will likely be the ones who save this holiday season (if it needs saving) or will push it over the top (if it needs the push). Given that thought let’s see WHO are the most likely to be selfing or who will be those treasured selfers.


OVERALL     A fairly robust 56.9% of ALL shoppers said they would “take advantage” of sales/price discounts during the holiday season & make additional NON GIFT purchases “for themselves/family” (The def of selfing).



GENDER      59% of MALES & 54.8% FEMALES said “yes” to selfing.


INCOME      54.9% earning < $50K and 58.5% earning $50K & > said “yes” to selfing.


AGE            70.9% of MILLENIALS & 60.9% from 35-44 YRS said “yes” to selfing. Given our definition of BOOMERS± (for this report they are from 45-64 yrs) 51.8% would be selfers with ONLY 39.1% of ELDERS (65 & older) selfing. Clearly, the push promos for selfing holiday shoppers must be directed at younger holiday shoppers. The irony here is that they will be spending the least of any age group during the holiday shopping season. (Given that reality perhaps, a special incentive/incentives will be needed! MILLENNIALS’ strong belief in selfing should be encouraged b/c of the “VALUE” that the holiday season “deals” bring to them while ELDERS should be encouraged to self b/c they deserve a “REWARD” for their legacy shopping efforts).




Ownrshp           67.3% of Proper Insights’ sample said they owned a smartphone (70.4% of MEN & 64.4% of WOMEN); 56.3% of those earning <$50K vs 74.8% earning more own “smarties”. About 85% of MILLENIALS were “smartie” owners vs 40% of ELDERS (64+) who had smart phones.


Holiday Shopping Research:


OVERALL     35.8% said they would do research on their “smarties”.



GENDER      39% of MEN & 32.7% of WOMEN said they would holiday research with their “smarties”.


INCOME      31.7% earning <$50K & 36.7% of those earning $50K & > would research using “smarties”.



  • 8% of MILLENIALS would do research on “smarties”.
    • 6% of those 35-44 yrs use “smarties” for research.
    • 7% BOOMERS± will be researching with “smarties”.
    • 0% of ELDERS will use smarties for research.


Holiday Purchasing:


OVERALL     19.1% will use “smarties” to buy.



GENDER      21.0% of MEN & 27.2% of WOMEN will be buying with “smarties”.


INCOME      16.4% of incomes <$50K & 19.3% with incomes of $50K & > will be holiday buying with “smarties”.


AGE            33.8% of MILLENNIALS; 24.6% of 35-44 YEAR OLDERS; 10.5% of BOOMERS± & 4.7% of ELDERS will be purchasing using their smart phones.



Redeem Coupons:


OVERALL     23.9% will redeem “smartie” coupons.



GENDER      20.4% of MEN & 27.3% of WOMEN will redeem “smartie” coupons.


INCOME      21.3% of those who earn <$50K & 25.2% of those who earn $50K & > will redeem “smartie” coupons.


AGE            34½% of MILLENNIALS (18-34 yrs) will redeem “smartie” coupons; 30.8% of those 35-44 YRS OLD, 18.2% of BOOMERS± (45-64 yrs) and 9.6% of ELDERS (65 & over) will redeem “smartie” coupons.





OVERALL     56% of 2014’s holiday shoppers will be purchasing online (a greater % than for any OTHER retail venue. This is the 1st time that at least ½ of holiday buyers will online AND that onlining will be the #1 holiday purchasing venue)


GENDER      54.8% of MALE & 57.2% of FEMALES will be purchasing online.


INCOME      49.2% of those earning <$50K & 62.0% of those earning $50K & > will make online purchases this holiday season.


AGE            60.6% of MILLENNIALS; 59.2% of 35-44 YR OLDERS; 54.5% of BOOMERS and 47.8% of ELDERS (65 & older) will be buying online.


About bernacmd

For over 24 years, University of Detroit Mercy Marketing Professor Michael Bernacchi, Ph.D., J.D, has produced "uNDER tHE mIKE-rOSCOPE", a newsletter discussing current "marketing and advertising¹s bends, trends & ends." A well-know fixture in Detroit and national media, UDM's marketing guru has made several appearances on CNN's "Talk Back Live," the Voice of America worldwide radio network (VOA), ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and on the pages of Sports Illustrated, Time, TV Guide, the New York Times, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post, to name a few. At University of Detroit Mercy, he has taught courses in Marketing Management, Consumer Behavior, Marketing Communications, Research and Corporate Social Responsibility and Sports and Entertainment Marketing. Michael Bernacchi can be reached at 313-993-1116 or bernacmd@udmercy.edu. Please appropriately attribute the following for their work on uNDER tHE mIKE-rOSCOPE: Yen Ju Lee Robert Rouse Vidhyasagar Natarajan Eric Baumgardner & Ian Young
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s