Holiday Shopping Intentions

By Technology Insider
Published on: November 2, 2018

Content powered by:

Technology Insider – Special Report

NPD Survey Reveals the Politics Lurking Behind. Generation Z consumers are particularly sensitive to a company’s stances on social and environmental issues.

PORT WASHINGTON, N.Y., November 1, 2018 – U.S. consumers are paying closer attention to politics than ever these days, and that’s changing the way some of them plan to shop for the holidays. In a recent holiday shopping survey conducted by The NPD Group, more consumers today than last year reported that a manufacturer’s or retailer’s position on current social, environmental, and political issues would affect their purchasing decisions over the holidays. Younger consumers, especially Generation Z consumers born after 1997, were particularly sensitive to a company’s stance on social and environmental issues — no small thing, considering this young age cohort will account for 40 percent of all consumers in 2020.

“In this mid-term election year, political polarization and activism is on the rise in this country, and it’s bleeding into the upcoming holiday season, especially among younger consumers,” said Marshal Cohen, chief industry advisor, The NPD Group. “While many might disregard the social and environmental views of younger consumers, they do so at their peril. After all, the oldest Gen Z consumers are just now entering the workforce – and the purchasing power of this generation will increase significantly in the years ahead.”

Social and environmental issues

More than half of consumers (52 percent) said that a manufacturer’s or a retailer’s position on social or environmental issues would impact their holiday buying decisions, which is three percentage points higher than 2017. Among the Generation Z cohort, that number rose to 65 percent, followed by Millennials, born between 1981 and 1996, at 55 percent. “Younger generations want  – and will pay a premium for — brands that stand for something and those that have corporate social programs that are aligned with their values,” Cohen said.

Political leanings

Similarly, nearly half (47 percent) of all U.S. consumers indicated that general political issues would play a role in their purchases, which is three points higher than last year. Nearly half (49 percent) of Baby Boomers, born between 1946 and 1964, reported that a company’s politics would affect their buying decisions, followed by Generation Z at 48 percent, and Millennials at 47 percent.


The “Holiday Purchase Intentions Survey” is designed to better understand consumers’ shopping and spending intentions for the upcoming holiday season. An online survey was fielded to members of NPD’s online consumer panel in September 2018. The survey was fielded to a U.S. representative sample. The results of 3,605 completed surveys are presented in this report.

About The NPD Group

NPD offers data, industry expertise, and prescriptive analytics to help our clients grow their businesses in a changing world.  Over 2000 companies worldwide rely on us to help them measure, predict, and improve performance across all channels, including brick-and-mortar and e-commerce.  We have offices in 27 cities worldwide, with operations spanning the Americas, Europe, and APAC.  Practice areas include apparel, appliances, automotive, beauty, books, B2B technology, consumer technology, e-commerce, fashion accessories, food consumption, foodservice, footwear, home, juvenile products, media entertainment, mobile, office supplies, retail, sports, toys, travel retail, games, and watches / jewelry. For more information, visit Follow us on Twitter: @npdgroup.



Janine Marshall

The NPD Group


Technology Insider

Technology Insider

Technology Insider's provide guest columns filled with news and event reports. From the arts to current events, our TI's share their thoughts on the world at large.

Pin It on Pinterest