If Santa's checking his list twice, he better make sure he's on Facebook. A new study reports that 17% of adult shoppers say they will use social media in some aspect of their holiday shopping, and 19% will rely on their mobile phones.
The survey -- part of Deloitte's 24th Annual Holiday Survey, a poll of more than 10,000 adults in the U.S -- says that of the nearly one in five who plans to use social media sites, 60% say they will do so to find sales, discounts, and coupons; 53% intend to use sites like MySpace and Facebook to research gift ideas, and 52% say they will check the wish lists of friends and family.
While young people certainly have greater amounts of social-media savvy than more grizzled consumers (52% of those in the 18-29 group will use social media to shop), interest is relatively strong among other age groups. In the 30 to 44 age bracket, 33% will use social media as a shopping tool, and in the 45 to 60 age group, 10% plan to do so.
Of the shoppers who plan to use their smartphones, 55% say they rely on their devices to look up store locations, 45% to research lowest prices, 40% to find general product information, 32% to get coupons, and 31% to find reviews. This year, consumers are literally putting their money where their mouth is: A full 25% say they will also use their phone to make a digital purchase.
The Deloitte study also found strong interest in shopping online, with 22% of respondents vowing to shop primarily via the Web, and 44% planning to use coupons they find on the Internet.
It also found plenty of evidence that consumers love the luxury of shopping through multiple channels. About 78% say they have made an in-store purchase after viewing the product at a store's Web site, for example, and 65% have done the reverse -- seen an item in-store, then gone home, done some more research and purchased it online.