News for North Texas
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

North Texans Are Savvy, Big-Spending Holiday Shoppers, Deloitte Survey Says

Christopher Connelly

Black Friday news flash: North Texans plan to spend more on gifts and entertainment than the average American — way more, according to the consulting company Deloitte. That’s a longstanding trend, according to the firm’s annual survey of holiday shoppers.

Using holiday shopping as a way to measure the economy, folks in Dallas-Fort Worth seem pretty optimistic: They plan to spend about 33 percent more during this holiday season than last year. That’s well above the national average of 23 percent.

“The economy in North Texas is really on pace and household finances appear to be in a good place at this point,” said Ed Tauriac, a partner at Deloitte.

Tauriac pointed to another takeaway from the survey that has to do with where people plan to spend that money: “For the first time, online gift buying will beat out traditional in-store shopping,” he said.

Still, Tauriac said consumers in North Texas aren’t ditching the brick-and-mortar just yet. They’re savvy, and try to get the best of both online and in-store shopping.

“They may be using cell phones while they’re in store to enhance those experiences,” Tauriac said. “The younger generation are using it to aid their search for the product, to see there’s a lot more items to look at, but also comparison pricing from shopping. And the individuals that are older are using it to track their respective orders once they return home.”

That puts pressure on retailers to offer both exciting in-store experiences, and also enhance their online offerings, according to Tauriac.

Here’s another squeeze point for sellers: “Although they’re buying online, the consumer still believes that he or she should pay nothing for delivery. About 89 percent of respondents say that delivery should be free,” according to Tauriac.

And even if they’re ordering a week before Christmas, Tauriac said, seven in 10 people say that free shipping should be included.

Christopher Connelly is a reporter covering issues related to financial instability and poverty for KERA’s One Crisis Away series. In 2015, he joined KERA to report on Fort Worth and Tarrant County. From Fort Worth, he also focused on politics and criminal justice stories.