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Cardlytics Research and Insights

eCommerce & Brand Love Drive Holiday Growth

Retail continues to evolve with the introduction of new disruptors and innovative sales experiences. In analyzing the top holiday spend trends, Cardlytics saw that customers are quickly embracing two major shopping trends that are driving growth across categories: eCommerce and direct-to-consumer brands.

eCommerce retailers spread good cheer

​Retailers no longer require a physical presence to gain customer awareness. In the past year, eCommerce brands saw an increase of 12% in overall holiday spend. These companies were generally established as online-only, with the vast majority of their sales still taking place online—for example, Wayfair, Casper, Warby Parker, Etsy, and Stitchfix.

eCommerce brands saw significant growth across several categories—often outperforming their non-eCommerce counterparts. Growth categories include Pets (+51%), Multiline (+14%), Beauty & Health (+12%), Branded Apparel (+9%), Sporting Goods (+6%), and Home & Garden (+5%).

CDLX Holiday 2019 Spend Trend: eComm Spreads Cheer

Peace, joy, and brand love

In addition to adopting eCommerce-only retailers, customers are increasingly willing to purchase directly from the brands they know and trust. Rather than look for a preferred brand at a multiline retailer, customers can browse a full product line-up and purchase directly within a brand’s own environment—for example at or Nike-branded stores. These branded properties saw year-over-year growth in categories where their multi-brand counterparts saw a decline. Examples include branded Sporting Goods (+8%), Shoes (+7%), and Apparel (+4%). 

CDLX Holiday 2019 Spend Trend: Peace Joy Brand Love

Actionable Tips:

Channel the eCommerce trend: Strengthen your online and mobile properties with price matching, shoppable gift guides, and free shipping to attract more digital customers.

Build strong brand connections: Well-recognized brands are driving holiday shoppers to make specialized purchases. Consider emphasizing deals on branded goods in your holiday marketing materials—whether your store sells one brand or one hundred—to make the most of this spend trend.

Find out where your customers are shopping when they’re not shopping with you: Are key competitors in your category offering a selection or price that you’re not? Beyond your category, are there potential tie-ins or partnerships that might align with your best customer’s shopping habits? Using powerful purchase history, Cardlytics helps answer these questions and more, putting insights into action to ultimately drive sales and grow market share.


Want more Holiday insights?

Check out our complete list of 2019 holiday spend trends.

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Research & Insights