Holiday spending is a significant component of annual retail sales, with expectations for the 2023 holiday season projecting a 4.5% increase in overall retail spending

Additionally, online holiday sales are anticipated to see substantial growth, reaching a global total of $1.19 trillion by 2023. 

To provide a snapshot of consumer behavior during this festive period, I’d like to share the most important holiday spending statistics that are crucial to note immediately. 🎁💳

To find specific year statistics and facts: 2023, 2022, 2021, 2020.

2023 Holiday Spending Predictions

  • For the 2023 holiday season, overall retail spending will rise 4.5%.
  • Global online holiday sales are expected to reach $1.19 trillion in 2023. 
  • According to Numerator’s research, consumers plan to spend $100 or more during the holiday season.
  • This holiday season, 67% of retailers expect customers to look for deals.
  • 17% of shoppers say they have already used generative AI to get ideas for purchases.
  • 88% of retailers say they will tighten their return policies in preparation for the holidays, which poses a risk.
  • In 2023, global online holiday sales will be around $1.2 trillion. 
  • US holiday sales will grow 1% YoY to $273 billion.
  • AI will drive $194 billion in online holiday sales.
  • Overall global retail spending will rise 4.5% to $1.3 trillion for the 2023 holiday season.
  • Holiday shopping can account for up to 30 percent of a retailer’s annual sales.

Source: (Martech, Salesforce, Salesforce, eMarketer)

2022 Holiday Spending Statistics

  • In 2022, holiday spending increased by nearly 7% annually.
  • In 2022, holiday retail sales in the United States were $936,3 billion, a 5.3% increase from 2021.
  • In 2022, the typical American holiday shopper spent $1,455 dollars. 
  • During the 2022 holiday season, consumers spent $211.7 billion online.
  • 63.1% of U.S. consumers have holiday spending budgets for 2022.
  • The majority of retailers provided double-digit discounts of up to 34%.
  • Consumers spent $211.7 billion online over the 2022 holiday season , an increase of 3.5% year over year.
  • According to a 2022 survey, 57% of U.S. consumers planned to shop online during the holiday season.
  • In the last decade, holiday retail sales have increased by 4.9% on average year over year.
  • In 2022, the average discount rate for holiday shopping in the U.S. was 23%, up 10% from the previous year.
  • Holiday shopping can account for up to 30 percent of a retailer’s annual sales. 
  • The NRF says that holiday sales in 2022 went up by 5.3% to $936,3 billion.
  • 49% of holiday shoppers will do more online shipping so they can ship directly to family and friends in 2021. 
  • Shoppers spent 8.4% more on Thanksgiving, 6.9% more on Black Friday and Cyber Week, and 6.5% more on Christmas.
  • Overall, consumers plan to spend an average of $1,430 on gifts, travel and entertainment this year. 
  • 74% of consumers plan to spend the same or more on holiday gifts this year compared to last year.
  • 47% of consumers cited free shipping as something that would influence where they shop for holiday gifts in 2021.

Sources: ( Statista, Retail Drive, NRF, The NPD Group / Annual Holiday Study 2021, NRF, MentalFloss, PWC, PWC, NPD 2021)

2021 Holiday Spending Statistics

  • In 2021, holiday spending grew by approximately 13.5% annually.
  • In 2021, holiday retail sales in the United States reached an all-time high of $889.30 billion.
  • The average holiday shopper in the United States spent $1,463 in 2021.
  • In 2021, the cost of Christmas shopping averaged $998 per person in the United States.
  • In 2021, consumers spent $33.9 billion from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday.
  • Global Holiday sales reached $886.7 billion in 2021.
  • The 2021 holiday season saw a 16.1% increase in US retail sales.
  • Shoppers spent $579 on holiday-related items in 2021, up from $457 in 2020
  • U.S. consumers spent a record $204 billion online this holiday season.
  • In 2021, consumers spent $33.9 billion between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday, a 1.4% decrease year on year. 

Source: (NRF, eMarketer, Business Wire, Adobe, Deloitte)

2020 Holiday Spending Statistics

  • In 2020, November-December holiday season retail sales increased an unexpectedly high 8.3 percent over 2019.
  • 40% of adults in the United States will spend less during the holiday season this year.
  • Americans spent $777.35 billion on holiday-related items in 2020.
  • In 2020, average holiday expenditures decreased to $1,387.
  • The total amount spent on holiday shopping online in the US in 2020 was $188.2 billion, up 32.2% from 2019.

Sources: (Insider Intelligence, Sales Force, Numerator, Retail Dive, NRF, Brand Innovators.)

2023 Holiday Forecast: Retail Spending to Climb 4.5%.

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
Optimistic outlook for the 2023 holiday retail marketA projected rise of 4.5% underscores a positive economic sentiment and indicates consumers’ willingness to spend more during the festive season.
Retailers should ramp up preparationsWith expectations set for an uptick in spending, retailers should strategize to maximize their share of the increased consumer expenditure.
Opportunity for innovative campaigns and promotionsThe predicted growth allows for brands to be creative and aggressive in their marketing, introducing new products and promotional strategies to capture consumer interest.

Source: Insider Intelligence

Global Online Holiday Sales Poised to Hit $1.19 Trillion in 2023.

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
E-commerce will play a dominant role in holiday spendingA projection of $1.19 trillion highlights the monumental shift of consumers gravitating towards online platforms for their festive shopping.
Global reach of online shopping is vastThis trillion-dollar figure underscores the borderless nature of e-commerce, suggesting a worldwide embrace of digital purchasing during the holiday season.
Businesses must optimize digital strategiesWith such significant revenue at stake, retailers should focus on refining their online offerings, ensuring seamless user experiences, and deploying effective digital marketing campaigns.

Source: Insider Intelligence

AI-Inspired Shopping: 17% Turn to Generative AI for Purchase Ideas.

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
Emerging role of AI in consumer decision-makingThe 17% statistic reflects an evolving trend where AI isn’t just assisting, but actively inspiring purchase decisions among shoppers.
Early-stage AI integration offers competitive edgeWhile the percentage might seem nascent, early adoption of such technologies can provide retailers a distinctive advantage in the market.
Potential for deeper AI-driven personalized shoppingThis inclination towards AI for inspiration signals an opportunity for businesses to further develop AI tools that cater to individual tastes and preferences.

Source: Sales Force

Consumer Insight: Average Holiday Spend Per Person Exceeds $100, Numerator Reveals.

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
Elevated spending trends are anticipated for the holidaysThe projection that consumers will spend $100+ each highlights a robust purchasing intent during the festive season.
Retailers should strategize for higher ticket itemsGiven the anticipated spending, retailers should ensure they offer products and bundles that align with this higher expenditure bracket.
Opportunity for value-driven promotions and offersThe forecasted spending allows retailers to craft promotions that not only drive sales but also offer perceived value for consumers willing to spend at this level.

Source: Numerator

Return Clampdown: 88% Retailers to Tighten Holiday Return Policies.

88% of retailers will tighten return policies before the holidays, posing a risk

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
Majority of retailers adopting a more stringent stanceAn overwhelming 88% of retailers modifying their return policies indicates a significant industry-wide shift in handling returns during the festive season.
Consumer trust and satisfaction may be at stakeWhile tightening return policies may protect retailers from losses, it poses a risk of alienating customers and could negatively impact their shopping experience.
Necessity for clear communication and transparencyRetailers must ensure that any changes to return policies are communicated effectively and transparently to prevent potential disputes and maintain customer trust.

Source: Sales Force

Digital Festive Spend: $211.7 Billion Online in 2022 Holidays.

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
Digital platforms captured substantial holiday revenueA total of $211.7 billion underscores the sheer magnitude of online shopping during the holiday season of 2022.
E-commerce continues to shape holiday retail trendsThis substantial figure indicates a sustained trajectory where consumers increasingly prefer digital channels for their festive purchases.
Retailers must prioritize their online presenceWith such immense revenue generated online, it is imperative for businesses to continually enhance their digital platforms and ensure they are poised to capture their share in future seasons.

Source: Retail Dive

2022 Sees Near 7% Uptick in Holiday Expenditure.

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
2022 witnessed a significant uptick in festive expenditureA nearly 7% increase emphasizes consumers’ heightened willingness and capability to spend during the holiday season.
Economic vitality or consumer sentiment may be on the riseSuch a substantial increase suggests a positive economic environment or improved consumer sentiment, possibly both, during 2022.
Retailers should be proactive in catering to this momentumThe observed growth rate indicates a lucrative market. Retailers should strategize to maximize benefits from this positive trend in the subsequent holiday seasons.

Source: Retail Dive

Staggering 13.5% Rise in 2021 Holiday Spending.

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
Significant rise in holiday spendingThe substantial 13.5% increase from the previous year indicates a strong uptick in consumer confidence and economic activity.
Potential economic recoveryThis marked increase could be a sign that consumers had more disposable income in 2021, possibly due to economic recovery or improved financial circumstances.
Retailers benefited in 2021The surge in holiday spending means businesses in the retail sector likely experienced higher revenues, making it a profitable season for many.

Source: NRF

2022 U.S. Holiday Sales Soar 5.3%, Totaling $936.3 Billion.

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
Consistent growth in holiday spendingThe 5.3% rise, although not as steep as in 2021, suggests continued confidence and purchasing power among consumers.
Nearing the trillion-dollar markApproaching $936.3 billion means the market is on the cusp of reaching the trillion-dollar threshold, underlining the significance and scale of holiday retail in the US.
Retail sector remains robustDespite fluctuations in global economies, the US retail sector has demonstrated resilience and the capability to sustain growth, indicating a positive business environment.

Source: Brand Innovators

Budgeting Trend: 63.1% U.S. Shoppers Set Financial Limits for 2022 Holidays.

Important takeaway:

Insight from DataRationale
Majority of shoppers are financially preparedThe fact that 63.1% of shoppers budgeted reveals a trend of financial planning and foresight among consumers.
Potential for credit or non-budgeted spendingThe remaining percentage not budgeting could suggest a segment relying on credit or making impromptu purchases, reflecting diverse spending habits.
Retailers can cater to both planned and spontaneous purchasesThe split data underscores the importance for retailers to cater to both budgeted shoppers and those open to unplanned, spontaneous buying.

Source: Retail Dive