"Quality Over Quantity" Remains the Holiday Trend

Friday, November 2, 2007

This holiday season consumers are thinking small. So small, in fact, that the space under the Christmas tree may appear a bit empty for some on Christmas morning. However, market researchers are seeing an ongoing trend of quality over quantity, and this holiday season looks to continue that trend.

"As in years past, people will be buying fewer items, but each item will in turn cost more," says David Allan, Ph.D, assistant professor of marketing at Saint Joseph's University in Philadelphia. "People are willing to sacrifice the possibility of a lot of small presents for the one or two things they really want and will use."

Consumer electronics will again be heavy on the minds of holiday shoppers this season. In particular, Apple will continue to dominate the market now that they have branched out into the cell phone world, says Allan. The recent price drop of the iPhone and the introduction of an iPod with a touch screen, called the iPod Touch, will find Apple as popular as ever.

Producers of video games will not experience a dip in popularity either, Allan says. While last year's hot system was the PlayStation 3, the Nintendo Wii, with its focus on multiplayer games and group entertainment, will lead the console war this year. Some games too will be harder to find than others, with Madden NFL 08 topping many gamers' want lists.

Allan is also following the toy market closely. "What will be interesting to watch is the fallout from toys, China, and lead-based products," he says, referring to the recent recall by Fisher-Price of almost one million toys containing excessive amounts of lead. Allan sees this as a market opening for some. "There is probably a big opportunity for a toy manufacturer to market 'safe' toys."

And Allan believes those concerned that the economic climate of the country will affect holiday spending should not worry. "I think that spending will remain about the same as last year, or even be slightly up."

Allan can be reached for comment at 610-660-1637, by email at david.allan@sju.edu, or by calling the Office of University Communications at 610-660-1222.




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