STUDY: Majority of U.S. Shoppers Are Buying More Online, but Are Fatigued by Barrage of Retailers’ Online Marketing


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New research from Avionos reveals more than three-quarters of shoppers feel overwhelmed by frequent brand messaging despite making more online purchases

CHICAGO, November 16, 2020 — A majority (78%) of U.S. shoppers say they have felt overwhelmed by more frequent digital communications from brands since the beginning of the pandemic, according to newly released data from Avionos, which designs and implements digital commerce and marketing solutions.

For its “Cutting Through the Retail Noise: The 2020 Avionos Holiday Shopping Report,” Avionos surveyed 750 U.S. consumers who had shopped with both a major retailer and a small, local business since March 2020. The survey was conducted to better understand how consumer purchasing habits have changed due to COVID-19 and what retailers can do to stand out this upcoming holiday season. The final report revealed that despite feeling overwhelmed by online brand messages, 78% of consumers also say they shop online more often than before the pandemic began.

Avionos’ report found the increase in online shopping has opened the door to new opportunities for both large and small businesses. In fact, since the beginning of the pandemic, the overall retail pie has increased with 64% of consumers saying they shop with local businesses more often, while 59% of consumers say they shop with major retailers more often. This indicates a critical need for all retailers to deliver quality, relevant content that resonates with consumers instead of overwhelming them this holiday season.

Whether it’s through personalized ads or incorporating campaigns that align with shoppers’ values, the success of each individual retailer this holiday season will depend on their digital communication strategy and ability to deliver convenient experiences for consumers. Brands must think outside of the box when curating content, especially since a majority (60%) of consumers only engage with 30% or less of the digital brand communications they see, and 5% never engage at all.

“While we’ve seen huge numbers of consumers move to online shopping over the past year due to COVID-19, the holidays will be a pivotal moment for retailers to think strategically and ensure their digital offerings are aligned with still-high consumer expectations for seamless experiences,” said Scott Webb, CEO of Avionos. “Retailers can no longer rely on physical storefronts to engage with customers, which is why companies must incorporate personalized, digital communications and convenient offerings to differentiate themselves from the competition.”

Additional report findings include:

  • Small, local businesses can thrive by aligning with customers’ values: Eighty-three percent of shoppers would spend more for products and services from some type of small, local business. Consumers indicated they shop with small, local businesses because they are struggling (66%), share their values and support causes they believe in (42%) and offer better customer service (37%).
  • Convenience is an important part of building an emotional connection: Convenience was the top reason consumers shopped at major retailers (49%) and the top reason customers shopped at small, local businesses (38%).
  • Small, local businesses can shine this holiday season: Almost half (47%) of shoppers feel guilty about shopping at major retailers, and almost three-quarters (72%) of them say it’s because they feel like they should be supporting small businesses instead.

To learn more about how consumer purchasing habits have changed due to COVID-19 and what retailers can do to cut through the noise this upcoming holiday shopping season, please visit

About Avionos

Avionos designs and implements digital commerce and marketing solutions that deliver measurable business outcomes for clients like Kellogg’s, JLL and CSA Group. Our iterative approach quickly unlocks new revenue, transforms customer experiences and drives customer engagement. We’re ranked on the 2019 and 2020 Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies lists, Crain’s Fast 50, Crain’s 2018, 2019, and 2020 Best Places to Work in Chicago lists, included on Comparably’s 2018 Best Company Culture List and certified as a Great Place to Work. Learn more at


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