Last year at this time, we conducted a nationwide survey of Hispanic (and non-Hispanic) consumers to try to understand their plans, habits and traditions surrounding shopping for the holiday season. It was one of the most popular downloads from our website all year.

This year, in an effort to make some comparisons and to start to develop Hispanic shopper trending data, we conducted the same survey again.

While some Hispanic holiday shopping plans have remained the same, many are changing and – for retailers, advertisers and their ad agencies – worth paying attention to.

In-store shopping. We’re seeing a slight uptick this year (from 73% to 76%) in the percentage of Hispanic shoppers who will make multiple trips to the stores this year to complete their holiday shopping… most likely taking along an adult family member.

Lesson: Make sure your Hispanic-focused advertising and promotional campaigns run all season long.

Online shopping. Do you run an e-tailer operation? Then LISTEN UP! The trend toward online shopping continues with 88% (up 6% from 2013) of Hispanic shoppers planning on doing at least some of their shopping online.

And it’s not just the percentage of shoppers that’s increasing… it’s also the expenditures. Last year, 77% of Hispanic shoppers said that at least 25% of all their shopping would be done online. This year, that jumps to 84% (including a 15% increase for the group saying that they would do 50-75% of all of their shopping online)!

Lesson: What kind of shape is your website in… is it welcoming of Hispanic shoppers? And that means more than just having a Spanish-language version. It also means being attentive to cultural nuances and sensitivities.

Sharing good deals. The Hispanic community really is all about “community.” To that end, Hispanic shoppers frequently share ‘good deals’ they come across with friends and family. For example:

    • 67% of Hispanic shoppers are Very Likely or Likely to send out a text about a good deal (compared to 64% last year).
    • 59% are Very Likely or Likely to share good deals on social media sites (up from 51% last year).

» » By comparison, sharing by non-Hispanic shoppers dropped 9% to 49% this year.

Pets. Evidently, shopping for the family pet is NOT a cultural issue… with 59% of Hispanics and non-Hispanics alike saying that gifts for a pet were on their shopping list.

Gift cards. Another aspect of the holiday shopping season looks to be ‘convenience,’ with 79% of Hispanic shoppers Very Likely or Likely to give Gift Cards as gifts this year (up 2% from 2013). Conversely, giving Gift Cards is down 6% in 2014 for non-Hispanic shoppers.

Lesson: Are your Gift Cards and P-O-P displays set-up to appeal to Hispanic shoppers?

Downward trends. For both Hispanic and non-Hispanic shoppers, two long-standing shopping traditions are waning – the Layaway option at retail stores and shopping on Black Friday.

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Why the decreases in these in-store shopping-related activities? Perhaps it’s tied to the increase in online shopping. Or maybe people are just tired of getting up at 3AM to get a good deal.

Three Kings Day. In the Hispanic community, another day of celebration – ostensibly marking the end of the Christmas season – is Three Kings Day. Like Christmas, this religious holiday also brings with it ‘gift giving.’

And while there is a slight drop-off from 2013 (50% to 47%) in Hispanics who will be celebrating this holiday… nevertheless, nearly half will continue to do so.

Lesson: Keep the holiday spirit alive for your Hispanic customers and change over your Christmas promotions to celebrate Three Kings Day as 2014 comes to an end.

Summary: To no one’s surprise, the increased activity among Hispanic shoppers continues. And as their shopping influence increases, so does the challenge for retailers, advertisers and their ad agencies to respond appropriately. Do that… and you’ll have a merry and joyous holiday season. Miss the mark… and, well… imagine a stocking full of coal!