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Consumers flock to online marketplaces for festive shopping

By Lauren Fruncillo November 23, 2021 - 11:42 am

Mirakl have announced the results of their 2021 Holiday Shopping Snapshot survey of 9,000 consumers from nine countries in Asia, Europe, North America, South America and Australia. The findings show an early start for holiday shopping as well as online festive shopping shifting towards marketplaces.

Online shopping shifts toward marketplaces

The increase in online shopping was also reflected in the use of online marketplaces, which has grown as shoppers look for lower prices (60%), faster delivery (50%) and better product selections this holiday season (40%). The report adds new context to the growth of online marketplaces from the consumer’s perspective and further underscores the market opportunity for marketplace operators and businesses looking to sell through these marketplaces.

An early start for festive shopping

The survey uncovered how the always-on nature of eCommerce, coupled with concerns over supply chain issues and potential product shortages, caused major changes to consumer behavior heading into the 2021 holiday shopping season. Similar to global respondents, Mirakl found more than half (52%) of U.S. consumers are shopping earlier than in previous years for holiday gifts, with 40% of respondents beginning their online holiday shopping in October or earlier. Only 14% of U.S. shoppers plan to wait until Black Friday or Cyber Monday to start their online holiday shopping.

Other key findings:

  • Consumers turn to marketplaces for better value: Three in five (60%) shoppers across the globe, including more than half in the U.S., cite better prices as a reason why they’re using online marketplaces this season. Nearly all respondents, including 94% globally and 92% in the U.S., say they plan to maintain (or even increase) their frequency of shopping on online marketplaces.
  • Third-party sellers also benefit from the marketplace boom: Four out of five U.S. respondents said they definitely would or would consider purchasing holiday gifts from third-party sellers through an online marketplace. In fact, millennials and Gen Z are the most likely to buy from third-party sellers on online marketplaces.
  • Supply chain disruptions are causing changes to customer behavior: 42% of U.S. respondents cited shipping delays as a key reason for starting their holiday shopping earlier this year. The same percentage also stated that an early start offers better product selections.

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