Yes, it is just about that time of year, holiday shopping time. According to Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)® the 2014 holiday season will see the highest levels of consumer spending on consumer electronics since they began tracking holiday spending in 1994. According to CEA’s holiday outlook, total tech spending during the holidays will increase 2.5 percent (up from 0.9 percent growth in 2013) to reach a record $33.76 billion during the 2014 holiday season.
“Consumers are decidedly more optimistic about holiday spending on tech this year versus last year,” said Shawn DuBravac, CEA’s chief economist and senior director of research. “The macroeconomic environment is providing a firmer foundation and holiday consumers are showing a strong inclination to shop this holiday season. CEA’s forecasts point to growth in overall spending as well as spending on tech this holiday season.”
Top Tech Gifts to Give and Receive
According to CEA’s 21st Annual CE Holiday Purchase Patterns Study, similar to last year the five consumer electronics gifts U.S. adults most want to receive are also the top five products driving the majority (51 percent) of total revenue for the industry in 2014. Combined, these products are expected to generate $108.8 billion in revenue in 2014, according to CEA’s U.S. Consumer Electronics Sales and Forecast.
Top Holiday Tech Wish List:
The tech products that consumers most want to receive as gifts this holiday season are:
2) Notebook/Laptop computers
5) Videogame consoles
While consumers want to receive consumer electronics as gifts this holiday season, 63 percent of U.S. adults plan to give the gift of technology this year. CEA expects headphones and earbuds (27 and 26 percent, respectively) to be the most popular electronic devices consumers give during the 2014 holiday season. Tablets (26 percent) also will be popular this year, followed by notebook/laptop computers (25 percent), TVs (24 percent) and smartphones (23 percent).
Emerging Tech Product Gifts
Emerging product categories, which just a few years ago were too small to track, are now listed as products that one in five consumers (19 percent) are likely to purchase as a gift. One in 10 consumers are likely to purchase a fitness device (10 percent), a smart device for the home (nine percent) or a smart watch (eight percent) as a holiday gift this year.
“The appetite for tech is strong for the 2014 holiday season,” said Steve Koenig, director of industry analysis, CEA. “Expect to see growing consumer awareness and interest in emerging tech categories, including health and fitness technology, as industry giants have entered the playing field. These products will make their first big splash this holiday season, setting up 2015 as a breakout year for emerging segments like smartwatches and smart home technologies.”
Holiday Shopping Timing
More consumers plan to shop early this year, but most will still wait to finish their shopping later in the season, when they feel the best deals are available. While most consumers (61 percent) plan to wait until November or December to start their holiday shopping, one-third (31 percent) indicate they anticipate shopping before November, up from 25 percent of consumers who planned to shop early last year. There also is a corresponding decline (seven percentage points from 2013) of consumers who start in December to search for the perfect gift.