Retailers bank on self-gifting
Trinkel De La Paz, 24, loves this holiday's deep discounts because they're enabling her to be a more generous Santa.
To herself, that is.
The Los Angeles graphic designer bought herself an iPad Mini and some clothes discounted on Cyber Monday, and she's not done. De La Paz said she feels free to splurge on herself because she has extra money from a recently landed job, a new apartment waiting to be spruced up and only one present to buy for her family's Secret Santa exchange.
“These prices are only happening this time of year,” she said. “I might as well stock up now.”
Come Christmas, many shoppers decide to treat themselves to a little (or sometimes not-so-little) something extra. Some do it to take advantage of irresistible promotions. Others buy an item as a gift and then decide they want another for themselves.
This fine art of giving to oneself at the holidays, dubbed self-gifting by retail pollsters who track such behavior, has become a key indicator for how merchants will fare once the post-Christmas tallies come in.
“The willingness of the shopper to push her budget beyond what she had originally planned is a key influencer for holiday growth,” NPD Group analyst Marshal Cohen said in a blog post. “In fact, the self-gifting indicator has made the difference between growth and decline.”
Cohen reasons that each year, the number of gifts Americans expect to give remains roughly the same, making their tendency to buy presents for themselves a more accurate gauge of their economic circumstances. And during the recession, when spending declined, “one of the leading factors that saved retailers was an increase in self-gifting” by consumers.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Toyota Yaris adds French flair for ’15
- First Niagara sets aside $45 million
- Faulty air bags in 30M vehicles
- Mini goes mainstream
- Amazon investors’ patience wears thin
- Bond mutual funds continue to carry their weight
- Motoring Q&A: ‘Check engine’ light doesn’t reset itself
- Sell-off reins in complacency
- Stocks rise broadly on earnings; Amazon sinks
- Education Management removes itself from Nasdaq listing
- Highmark seeks double-digit increase for more benefits, heavy use