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78% of Holiday Procrastinators Purchase Clothing and Accessories: Klarna

Shoppers across the globe may be flocking to the web amid a steadily spreading pandemic, but some last-minute gift-givers may have no choice but to head into stores this season.

Newly released data from Klarna shows that of the 40,000 U.S. consumers surveyed in the payment solution provider’s latest study, a whopping 79 percent have procrastinated on their holiday shopping. What’s more, 64 percent of that contingent said they plan to purchase gifts in stores during the remaining days before Christmas, with more than one-third waiting until the week leading up to the big day to check names off their lists.

Men and women demonstrate a near-equal propensity for eleventh-hour shopping, with about 80 percent of both groups admitting to being dawdlers. About three-fifths of all generational cohorts, from Gen Z through the Silent Generation, are guilty of postponing their purchasing.

Despite the fact that deliver-by-Christmas deadlines have all but passed, more than half (55 percent) of consumers said they would continue to purchase some gifts online, even if those items wouldn’t arrive in time for the holiday. Nearly half (45 percent) of shoppers who plan to peruse the web for gifts said they would give their friends and family members photos of their presents as stand-ins for the real thing, while more than one-quarter said they would provide an IOU note as a placeholder.

Men are more likely to go this route, with 64 percent saying they thought notes and pictures were an appropriate replacement for tangible presents, and 53 percent of women saying the same.

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With just a handful of days left to gather gifts, omnichannel services  are also proving important to Covid-conscious shoppers, Klarna’s data revealed. More than one-quarter (27 percent) said they would only buy from brick-and-mortar retailers if curbside pickup was available.

Notably, apparel is the most popular category for gifters who drag their feet. The vast majority of last-minute shoppers (78 percent) gravitate to clothing and accessories, while 45 percent choose electronics and one-third pick home goods. Gift cards and cash remain ever-popular selections, with 44 percent of shoppers choosing the option so that their loved ones can pick out their own gifts at post-Christmas sales.

While apparel remains the most popular choice for gift givers, more than 2,000 respondents fingered jewelry as the best present they’d ever received, with sparkly rings taking the cake. Gift cards, money, cars, watches and handbags also proved popular with Klarna users. Shoppers still on the fence about what to buy for their loved ones may want to eliminate socks as an option, as more than 3,000 survey respondents characterized the cozy foot cladding as the “strangest gift they’d ever received.”

As 2020 roils the retail sector, conscious young shoppers are proving more likely than their older counterparts to support independent brands struggling to manage sluggish spending. More than two-fifths (45 percent) of Gen Z consumers and 43 percent of millennials say they’ll patronize small businesses this year, while just over one-quarter of Silent Generation shoppers and about one-third of Baby Boomers deemed the cause important.