Roku Survey Finds Consumers Upbeat Heading Into Holiday Shopping Season; Spending Expected To Tick Up 5%


Roku, in a survey of more than 2,000 consumers conducted with the Harris Poll, found that 72% of respondents see the U.S. economy improving over the next 12 months.

That optimism is expected to be reflected in holiday spending, which Roku’s 2021 Consumer Holiday Shopping Report estimates will tick up 5%. The streaming provider has a stake in the economic outlook given its burgeoning advertising business. The report, accordingly, is sprinkled with ample indications that (surprise, surprise) streaming ads are really gosh-darn effective.

The survey was conducted online in mid-August within the U.S., among 2,007 adults who reported plans to shop during the upcoming holiday season. Results
were weighted for age, gender, region, urbanicity, race/ethnicity, education, marital status, household income, and/or socio-economic status to be nationally representative.

More than one-third of respondents said they expect to spend more this year than last holiday season, the largest indicator since the 2018 Harris poll. Apparel is the top gift category, followed by gift cards and home goods.

Also, it’s not your imagination — the season is starting earlier than ever. One in five people surveyed said they bought gifts before Labor Day. Black Friday and Cyber Monday remain important dates for shoppers, but more and more gifts are being bought online, with nearly two-thirds of Gen Z respondents indicating that would be how they shop. Only 15% of all shoppers say they will start after Black Friday/Cyber Monday.

Because Roku is interested in connecting the dots between consumer tendencies and opportunities for brands looking to connect with them via streaming, the survey ranks times of day when shoppers stream the most. Primetime (between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m.) accounts for the the biggest percentage of total streaming hours, with 25.6%. Daytime (9 a.m. to 2 p.m.) is a close second, with 21.3%. Early morning (from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m.) still seems to belong to linear fare like network morning shows, accounting for just 6.6% of streaming hours.

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