Attract last-minute shoppers this holiday season

The holiday season is a time when we celebrate with family and friends, exchange gifts, decorate our homes, and indulge in delicious treats. Now that we’re in the “most wonderful time of the year,” eBay sellers should be ready to meet the needs of the millions of shoppers who flock to the platform to find not just the perfect gift for their loved ones, but also decorations for their homes, fashion for the season, and more. 

Below, we’ll explore the shopping trends we saw in the 2022 holiday season to help eBay sellers prep their inventory and advertising strategy for the last-minute shoppers flooding the marketplace at the end of this year.

Who’s shopping at the last minute?

Survey data from our 2023 Holiday Guide revealed that last-minute shoppers who wait to make holiday purchases do so in hopes of scoring last-minute deals for their purchases. Almost half (46%) of last-minute shoppers cited this as their primary reason for waiting. Additionally, more than half (53%) of shoppers cited good value for money as a priority when shopping for gifts, while 45% prioritize product quality in their search for holiday purchases.

More reasons why shoppers may shop late in the season:

  • 43% of consumers also say they wait because they procrastinate
  • 38% report the items they want tend to be out of stock or have supply chain issues.
  • 32% say they don’t buy much for the holidays, so December is enough time for them to shop – particularly those in the elder generation (55-65 – 51%).

What are last-minute shoppers buying?

We uncovered eBay’s most popular holiday items, brands, and searches in 2022 to help sellers wrap up more sales during the week and hit their holiday goals for the year.

Trading card brands, including Panini, Topps, and Bowman, were among the top purchased items across all categories during the 2022 holiday season. Additionally, Lego grew during Cyber Week +62% compared to the rest of the year. Other toy brands that made the nice list were Hot Wheels and Hasbro.

We found Nike as the top purchased brand for clothing, followed by brands such as Adidas, Asics, Hanes, Polo Ralph Lauren, and Uggs. Interestingly, Louis Vuitton was purchased by Millennials and Gen Z buyers at a higher rate compared to the rest of the year. Furthermore, 71% of the top searched keywords within Fashion were in Men’s categories, with Jordan and Carhartt jackets at the top of the list.

According to our 2023 Holiday Trends Calendar, certain categories spiked in December over earlier in the season, including:

  • Video games: +50%* (Between 12/4 – 12/17)
  • Video game consoles: +60% (Between 12/4 – 12/24)
  • Projector Mounts & Stands: +100% (12/18)
  • Smart home hubs: +55% (Between 12/18 – 12/24)
  • Remote controlled toys: +70% (Between 12/18 – 12/24)

*lift in sales compared to the rest of the year.

How to nab last-minute shoppers

According to a survey conducted by eBay, one-third (33%) of respondents say they are very influenced by ads during holiday season shopping, meaning that more than 50% of gifts they purchase are different from what they originally intended to buy. This percentage rises to almost half (47%) of 35-44 year old shoppers. Additionally, over half (54%) feel more confident about holiday gift choices when chosen from ads, suggesting that advertisements such as Promoted Listings can provide a level of reassurance to shoppers.

In conclusion, as the holiday season approaches, eBay sellers should be ready to meet the needs of the millions of shoppers who flock to the platform to find the perfect gift for their loved ones, decorations for their homes, and more. By understanding the shopping trends from the 2022 holiday season, sellers can maximize their sales potential by providing top-selling products, prioritizing quality, and strategic advertising. 

With these tips, sellers can make the most of the holiday shopping season and enjoy a successful end to the year.