Retail Trends for the 2019 Holiday Season

November and December are the most important part of the year for many US retailers.  Innovations in delivery and pick-up and the role of resale in holiday shopping are two trends that analysts at Euromonitor International are watching as holiday shopping gets underway.

How to Collect Purchases?

2019 was a year of significant investments in delivery and logistics by retailers. Examples of these investments include Amazon announcing an expansion of Prime one-day shipping and Walmart’s expansion of Delivery Unlimited.  Consumers are busy at the end of November and December, and retailers are likely to offer a variety of innovative ways for shoppers to get their purchases during the 2019 holiday shopping season.

In mid-November, Target announced that same-day delivery via Target-owned service Shipt is now available within the Target app.  Department store chain Nordstrom has announced that throughout the holiday shopping season, select stores will be open for online order pick-ups twenty-four hours a day and that all Nordstrom stores will offer curbside pick-up for orders. These initiatives reflect an intensification of omnichannel efforts from the 2018 holiday shopping season, and of the retailer’s efforts to allow the consumer to pick receive their items in the way that works best for the consumer as an individual.

Can Resale Get in on Holiday Buying?

The resale sector has grown significantly in recent years, driven by factors such as growing concerns about the environmental impacts of buying new items and an interest in having access to popular brands and products at attractive prices.  A number of resale players are making a case to American shoppers to turn to second-hand products for gifts this holiday season.  In 2018, resale platform thredUP offered discounts of up to 50% off marked prices over the Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend.  For 2019, resale players such as Crown & Caliber and Glambot launched significant discounts and new products in the lead-up to Black Friday.

There is reason to believe that resale players will be successful in getting shoppers to buy resale products as gifts for others and for themselves this holiday shopping season, particularly amongst younger consumers: a recent survey by resale app Mercari found that half of the American consumers under the age of 34 would be willing to give second-hand gifts.  The same survey found that just 4% of respondents would be displeased to receive a second-hand item as a gift.

For additional insights, please contact Amanda Bourlier at Amanda.Bourlier@Euromonitor.com.