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Report: Majority of U.S. Consumers Will Turn to Amazon First for Gift Shopping This Holiday Season

New Episerver research finds more than half of consumers plan to buy all or most of their gifts through the retail giant this year as e-commerce traffic surges.

NEW YORK, October 13, 2020 – A majority (52%) of U.S. shoppers plan to start their online shopping via Amazon™ this holiday season, according to newly released findings from Episerver, the customer-centric digital experience company.

For its latest report, “An Interview with The Couch Shopper: The Episerver Holiday Ecommerce Report 2020,” Episerver surveyed 4,050 online shoppers across the world and performed 1.6 billion website sessions to uncover the behaviors and trends shaping the future of e-commerce. The survey revealed that 42% of U.S. shoppers plan to buy most of their holiday gifts on Amazon this year, and 11% say they plan to buy all of their holiday gifts on Amazon.

Amazon is not only the world’s largest retailer, it is now most consumers’ first stop along their holiday shopping journey and remains a go-to for year-round shopping needs. Episerver’s study found that in general, 48% of online U.S. shoppers visit Amazon first when they have a specific product they’re looking to purchase, and 36% of U.S. consumers begin their shopping journey on Amazon even when they do not have a specific product in mind.

Whether it’s with Amazon or another retailer, there will be an exponential increase in online holiday shopping season this year, amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and a majority of which will occur through mobile devices. In its analysis of web traffic, Episerver found that 2020 e-commerce traffic overall spiked 18% year-over-year, and mobile traffic specifically ticked up 5% year-over-year -- now accounting for 59% of all traffic to retail websites.

Episerver’s survey of consumers revealed the most active shoppers are also the most likely to use their smartphones: 53% of consumers who said they shop online every day primarily rely on their smartphones to do so. When viewed as a whole, the report’s findings indicate the need for retailers to tailor their content to consumers across all types of channels and to deliver a mobile-first shopping experience this holiday shopping season and beyond.

“As Amazon claims an increasingly larger share of the market, retailers and brands can no longer compete by using broad promotions to stand out or catch consumers’ eyes,” said Josh Schoonmaker, senior director of strategy, commerce, at Episerver. “Instead, retailers must draw consumers in with intuitive online shopping experiences, compelling content, and personalized recommendations or offers.”

Other key findings from Episerver’s holiday shopping report include:

  • Across the world, free standard shipping is the number one service shoppers expect from brands and retailers, and it is especially critical for U.S. shoppers, 83% of whom said the same.
  • Fifty-six percent of global online shoppers have returned to a retail website to purchase the items they previously viewed or added to their cart due to a retargeted ad.
  • When asked why they did not return to a retail website after being retargeted with ads, the top answers consumers selected were: “the ads were annoying” and “the ads were not relevant to what I was looking at before,” respectively.

To learn more about the expectations and habits of today’s online shoppers heading into the 2020 holiday season, download “An Interview with The Couch Shopper: The Episerver Holiday Ecommerce Report 2020” here.

About Optimizely (Episerver)

At Optimizely (Episerver), we're on a mission to help people unlock their digital potential. With our leading digital experience platform (DXP), we equip teams with the tools and insights they need to create and optimize in new and novel ways. Now, companies can operate with data-driven confidence to create hyper-personalized experiences. Building sophisticated solutions has never been simpler. Optimizely’s 900+ partners and 1100+ employees in offices around the globe are proud to help more than 9,000 brands, including Toyota, Santander, eBay, KLM and Mazda, enrich their customer lifetime value, increase revenue and grow their brands. Learn more at

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Media Contacts:

Rachel Teitt Gill
Director of Corporate Communications, Optimizely
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Lucas Strombeck
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