How Much Are Americans Projected To Spend on Christmas in 2021?

In 2020, Americans spent roughly $188.2 billion shopping online for the Christmas holiday. This year, Americans are projected to spend $207 billion.

Jennifer Farrington - Author

Nov. 11 2021, Published 12:01 p.m. ET

The interior of a shopping mall at Christmas
Source: Unsplash

Christmas is one of the most anticipated holidays of the year, both for children and adults. In addition to getting to spend time with friends and relatives to enjoy those delicious meals and beverages you only get once a year, you'll likely participate in a gift exchange.

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Though gift-giving isn’t why most people celebrate Christmas, the holiday certainly centers around it. How much do Americans spend on average for Christmas, and what types of gifts do consumers buy the most around this time of year?

In 2020, Americans spent roughly $188.2 billion online for the Christmas holiday

how much americans spend on christmas
Source: Unsplash

For many people, Christmas shopping begins well before their balsam fir tree goes up. Black Friday, which falls on Nov. 26 this year, and Cyber Monday, which falls on Nov. 29, are two days consumers spend a considerable amount of money, with retailers offering deals they can’t pass up.

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Though some people still shop the traditional way (that is, by going into the store), most people today purchase their holiday gifts, decor, and clothing from online retailers. In 2020, online holiday sales hit a record high of $188.2 billion, according to Adobe Analytics. The amount is likely higher than that, though, as Adobe Analytics only measures transactions from 80 of the top 100 U.S. online retailers.

During Cyber Monday 2020, online sales exceeded $10 billion, and all other days throughout the holiday season averaged $1 billion or higher, including Christmas Eve. Though the pandemic put a dent in many consumers’ wallets in 2020, data suggests it hardly impacted the Christmas holiday.

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How much did consumers spend online for the 2019 holiday season?

In 2019, online sales were around $142.5 billion, with consumers spending an average of $2.3 billion per day during the holiday season, according to Adobe Analytics. The period between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday “hit record heights.” The amount spent on Christmas seems to climb each year. In 2018, consumers spent around $126 billion online.

How much are Americans projected to spend online for the 2021 holiday season?

This year, Adobe Analytics forecasts Americans will spend $207 billion online for the 2021 holiday season. This estimate doesn’t include what consumers plan to spend in stores, as many retailers, such as Walmart and Target, are offering deals both online and in-store on Black Friday and for the remainder of the holiday season.

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What do consumers buy most for the Christmas holiday?

how much consumers spend on christmas
Source: Unsplash

According to Adobe Analytics, 84 percent of the 2019 holiday season’s e-commerce growth was attributed to smartphone sales. In 2020, a large percentage of sales went to new game consoles. This year, Sony’s Playstation 5 gaming console has quite the demand despite being released in 2020.

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For the 2021 holiday season, Adobe Analytics projects consumers who shop online will spend most on toys, electronics, gift cards, and books. Many might find this year that some of their most desired products are out of stock due to supply-chain issues. Adobe Analytics reported that “out-of-stock notifications have remained high throughout 2021.”

It's clear that consumers are still willing to spend for the Christmas holiday, though shopping is done differently these days. Buy-online, pick-up-in-store and curbside pickup options have gained much traction since the COVID-19 pandemic struck, and Americans continue to prefer both options.


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