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Say goodbye to the overcommercialized Christmas: Pandemic-weary shoppers want a meaningful holiday

This holiday season, shoppers aren’t planning on glitzy and gift-oriented celebrations. Instead, many are preparing for smaller gatherings, reining in spending and directing more of their dollars toward retailers that share similar values during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new survey by Accenture.

The majority of those surveyed — 61% — said they plan to minimize in-store shopping to reduce health risks to essential workers, the survey of more than 1,500 U.S. consumers in August by the consulting firm found. The same number said they are more likely to make purchases at companies that show they’re committed to health, safety and hygiene. 

More than 40% said they won’t shop with retailers that have laid off staff or reduced employees’ benefits because of the pandemic.

And over three-quarters of consumers said they want retailers to close on Thanksgiving Day, so workers can take a break and spend time with their families.

Jill Standish, who leads Accenture’s retail practice, said the global health crisis has inspired Americans to reflect on the season differently. People have had to rearrange their homes as they work at the kitchen table or help their kids with remote school work. They have juggled crying babies and barking dogs during Zoom conference calls. And they are realizing they may not be able to enjoy the same holiday traditions this year or gather with loved ones who live far away.


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