Parks Associates Blog

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Holiday Purchase Intentions and Recession-proof Gaming Industry?

We now have incredibly fresh data on consumer purchase intentions between now and January 1, 2009. We put a survey into the field late last week titled Digital Media Evolution, and a significant focus is on consumer electronics purchases made this year and those planned for the rest of 2008. I've organized the data under some major themes.
What Will Consumer Electronics Purchases Look Like this Year?
About half of consumers surveyed (49%) indicate that they will purchase fewer consumer electronics this year due to economic uncertainty. Interestingly enough, 17% of consumers plan to spend more on consumer electronics this holiday season, even as they reduce gifting for other products.

How Much are Consumers Planning to Spend?
Twenty-eight percent of consumers don't plan to spend for any consumer electronics this year, but 19% plan to spend more than $500. For gaming software, 49% don't plan to buy, but 16% plan to spend $100 or more.

Top Planned Holiday CE Purchases
When asked "How likely is your household to purchase any of the following products before January 1, 2009," gaming software (either for the console or the PC) tops the list. Smaller electronics look to be more popular this year.

There was in interesting article in CNET today about the gaming industry and whether it's recession-proof. However, here's a stat that was cited that simply cannot be true:

"[Forty-six] percent of consumers expect to purchase a video game system of some kind on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving."

That simply cannot be 46% of all consumers. Maybe 46% of consumers who plan to purchase a consumer electronics product? Even that seems way too high.

We'll see come Monday what the end result of Black Friday was. The wife and I had discussed buying an HDTV for the bedroom, but I'm convinced that we may see even better deals right after the Christmas holiday, so I'm waiting. Plus, who in their right mind wants to crawl out of bed at 4 a.m. the day after Thanksgiving?

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