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Indians More Inclined To Send Gifts To Help Others, Giving Back To Cause Year-End Holiday Season: Report

The Indians surveyed are expected to spend 89 per cent of their holiday gifting budget on gift cards, with fashion and health and beauty being the most popular gift card categories.

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Blackhawk Network, a branded payments provider, has released its 2021 Global Holiday Shopping Forecast to equip retailers with the key lessons and insights to engage with shoppers in the year-end holiday season. 

Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the year-end holiday gifting ritual has remained a constant amongst Indian shoppers. However, consumers’ approach towards traditional gifting has significantly shifted, with 68 per cent of surveyed shoppers willing to purchase gift cards that give back to causes and 91 per cent intending to send gifts to people who’ve experienced hardships. 

The Indians surveyed are expected to spend 89 per cent of their holiday gifting budget on gift cards, with fashion and health and beauty being the most popular gift card categories.

Additionally, 84 per cent of Indian shoppers surveyed said they do not want to deal with the hassle of returns or exchange of gifts. Interestingly, 62 per cent acknowledged that they receive at least one bad gift every year. 

This changing perspective towards gifting presents a new opportunity for retailers to connect with their consumers, as both retailers and shoppers seek newer ways to navigate the challenges that the 2021 year-end holiday season has to present. The report also revealed that almost 96 per cent of Indian respondents want to gift digitally in the upcoming holiday season.

“In India, year-end gifting has become a big trend as it is an occasion to gift friends and family. The past year, we’ve seen a growing preference for gift cards among Indian shoppers owing to convenience, choice, and safety. Our research reveals that consumers are planning to spend more money on buying gifts this year than they did in 2020. However, consumers’ preferences and priorities have notably changed. This shift has posed unique challenges for retailers and businesses to engage and delight customers. Year-end 2021 opens new windows for retailers to align their strategy to meet the expectations of shoppers," said Head of Global Marketing and Corporate Brand of Blackhawk Network, Theresa McEndree.

According to the report, the digital shift is here to stay this year-end holiday season. 

The acceleration of all things digital has made Indians turn to digital and contactless payments, digital wallets, digital gift cards, and QR codes as the pandemic reshaped consumer behavior. India has emerged as a forerunner in mobile commerce adoption in comparison to its global counterparts.

This digital shift is expected to continue in the upcoming holiday season as Indian shoppers plan to use mobile wallets to pay for holiday gifts.  A total of 94 per cent of surveyed Indian Gen Zers are more likely to find digital gift cards appropriate, further reaffirming the digital shift headed by the younger generation.


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