A store aisle with Halloween and Christmas decorations. How do consumers feel about Christmas creeping up earlier and earlier?
From Pershing Square to Beverly Center to Amazon.com, Christmas decor and holidays shopping tips are up and glowing even before All Hallow's Eve. If you think that's early, Kmart's holiday-shopping ads went into rotation on September 9, more than 100 days before Christmas - an unprecedented move according to Forbes.
Why so early? A few things are at play. Hanukkah lands on Thanksgiving this year - shortening the shopping time for a gift-intensive celebration. Retailers also blame the calendar for giving six fewer shopping days this year, which only happens every six or seven years - giving them less time to make sales projections.
Still, what's the excuse for seeing lights, trees and tinsel in the public space? How does it affect how you think about the holidays? Will you shop earlier than ever if the deals are right?
Kit Yarrow, consumer research psychologist and professor at Golden Gate University in San Francisco and author of the forthcoming book “Decoding the New Consumer Mind: How and Why We shop and Buy” (March 2014, Jossey-Bass)
Marshal Cohen, Chief Industry Analyst, the NPD Group - a retail analysis firm; Author, “Buy Me! How to Get Customers to Choose Your Products and Ignore the Rest” (2010)