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Trend Time: Ways to Reach the Perfect Consumer for the Upcoming 2022 Holiday Season 

Just as we’ve seen the past two years, this holiday season will look much different than the year before. This edition of Trend Time details how shopping habits are evolving and should shape up as we enter the 2022 holiday shopping season.

Meredith Cunningham Published: August 26, 2022

Although 2021 was also a tough year, and consumers faced financial challenges, consumer confidence significantly increased compared to 2020. According to research from Merkle, the 2021 holiday season proved to be stronger than originally expected, as total retail spending increased by 16%. ​ 

This year should continue that trajectory. The experts at eMarketer forecast that holiday season sales will continue to rise in 2022 to the tune of $1.3 trillion for both brick-and-mortar and e-commerce retailers. But like the past two years, consumers face a new set of concerns and economic factors – like inflation – that will impact holiday spending.  

As we approach the holidays, it’s important to be mindful of how consumer spending habits are continuously shifting and adapting to the economic climate, changing how they spend on things like daily essentials.  

According to a study by Merkle, As of April 2022, 34% of consumers said inflation makes them more likely to buy fewer products overall, and 42% are looking to buy products on sale during a promotion. As such, consumers will likely plan to complete their shopping on major spending days.​ eMarketer predicts: 

  • Cyber Monday will be the top spending day of the season, rising +12% from last year​ 
  • Black Friday will be the second biggest spending day, rising +10%​ 
  • Thanksgiving is expected to grow the fastest at 14% 

 These stats also underline the consumers’ need for hybrid purchasing options, as 42% of consumers prefer in-store purchases, and 36% prefer home deliveries. Meanwhile, mobile apps account for nearly half of e-commerce sales in 2022. ​ 

Digital experiences are important to consumers, but keeping brick-and-mortar stores up and running should still be a priority for brands. Brands should bring the in-person and online experiences together and create a cohesive shopping experience for consumers to elevate brand value. ​ 

On top of a hybrid shopping experience, consumers are also expecting more creative ways to shop. They prefer to have different options for all stages of the consumer journey.  

  • 69% believe brands should offer new ways to receive products. ​ 
  • 63% called free shipping very important in delivering convenient experiences.​ 
  • 42% prefer to handle customer service issues in stores. This includes 41% of Gen Zers, who are more connected to technology. ​ 

What does this mean for your brand?  

Our Trend Time series is designed to provide brands like yours with new insights to capture the hearts and minds of your target audiences. These insights, paired with the right execution of advertising and messaging, will attract new consumers to your brand.   

“I wanted to get ahead of the curve and talk to my audience proactively. I looked at TEGNA research and applied it to my own dealership. I tweaked my messaging for my TV commercials and online to make my local messaging a little bit stronger, says Bill Dickason of Bill Dickason Buick Chevrolet. “It’s really made a difference. With TEGNA, my store’s up 40% year over year.”  

Sound Good?  

At TEGNA, we work with 3,000+ retail brands like yours looking to reach target audiences this holiday season. Your brand will be merry and bright with Broadcast, OTT Streaming, and Digital Solutions. Contact us to learn how we can help your brand get into the holiday spirit. 

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