Is Shopping On Christmas Day The Next Big Thing In Retail?

For better or worse, we’ve come to a point where shopping on Thanksgiving day is no longer a fringe case. But what about Dec. 25? With the exception of some vital retailers — drugstores, the occasional supermarket, gas stations, and, most importantly, movie theaters — most stores don’t even mess with the idea of opening on Christmas. But a new survey says that a not insignificant number of shoppers would be willing to buy stuff after they clean up all the wrapping paper.

This is according to research from LoyaltyOne Consulting, which surveyed nearly 1,300 shoppers from across the country and found that, overall, 18% of them said that if stores opened after 6 p.m. on Christmas day, they would be there, ready to do some shopping.

The eagerness to ditch their families in favor of the mall was particularly strong among those in the 18-24 age group. Nearly 1/3 (30%) said they would shop on Christmas. The numbers didn’t dip much for the next oldest age bracket, 25-to-34-year-olds, with 27% willing to skip the Christmas ham for potential post-Christmas savings.

But before the malls start ordering all their retailers to open up on Christmas or else (like they do on Thanksgiving), a larger number of people are pretty opposed to the idea of shopping on Dec. 25.

According to the survey, 24% of all respondents said they not only wouldn’t shop on Christmas, but that they would also be less likely to shop in the future at a store that does open on Christmas. More than half of the people (58%) simply said they have no intention of ever shopping on Christmas. While that percentage was smaller for the 18-24 (53%) and 25-34 (52%) age brackets, it still seems to indicate that a majority of consumers just want the day off from shopping.

Of course, online retailers don’t shut down their websites for the holiday, so consumers are more free than ever to make purchases at whatever hour — on whichever day — they choose.

We’d predict that — rather than risk the ire of shoppers who oppose opening on Christmas (and dealing with the extra cost of paying for employees who come in to work on Dec. 25) — retailers may simply start offering Christmas day deals online for those who want to test out their new phone by buying something on it with the gift card they got from the uncle who never visits.

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