According to FDRA’s 2020 Holiday Shoe Sales Survey, 43 percent of shoppers are most likely to purchase casual shoes this holiday season, followed by 36 percent who will buy athletic shoes and 20 percent who plan to spend on  fashion/dress shoes or boots.

Men are split, according to its survey, between athletic shoes (43 percent) and casual shoes (41 percent), with only 16 percent planning to purchase dress shoes or boots. For women, 46 percent will buy casual shoes, the remainder are split between athletic shoes (30 percent) and fashion/dress shoes or boots (24 percent).

The survey found that 41 percent of respondents report that they are very likely to purchase new shoes this holiday season, either for themselves or as gifts. An additional 25 percent are somewhat likely, while 34 percent are not likely to purchase.

Compared to the 2019 FDRA survey, the percentage of respondents that are very unlikely to buy shoes this season has increased by 3 percent. Other findings from the survey include:

  • 71 percent of purchasers plan to buy shoes online compared to 29 percent that plan to shop in-store or do curbside pick-up. In 2019’s survey, 52 percent of respondents planned to shop online with 48 percent of respondents shopping in-person.
  • Malls rank as the most comfortable in-person shopping experience for 36 percent of shoppers. Twenty-one percent said that they would not be comfortable shopping in a store for shoes. The remaining respondents were split between strip malls (17 percent), department stores (14 percent, and big-box stores (13 percent).
  • 44 percent of respondents most often use Amazon to browse and purchase, while 20 percent use a retailer’s website, 19 percent use the shoe brand’s website, and 10 percent use a footwear-specific site. Since 2019’s survey, the percentage of shoppers using Amazon has decreased by 6 percent from 50 percent.
  • Respondents said the price of shoes/discounts are the most important factor for purchasing shoes (41 percent); (32 percent) said their need for shoes would spur a purchase; 16 percent would buy to add variety; 10 percent will shop for a specific brand/type of shoe; 2 percent said other factors.
  • 43 percent of respondents said the best time to shop for holiday shoes is before Black Friday from October to mid-November; 40 percent said that Black Friday to Cyber Monday is the best time to shop and offers the best deals, and 17 percent said that the best deals happen in December.
  • Shoppers are split on how much they intend to spend overall; 37 percent plan to spend less than last year, 33 percent plan to spend around the same; and 31 percent plan to spend more.

The survey of 1,158 U.S. consumers was conducted by Emerson College Polling between October 8 and 9. The full survey is here.

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