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Microsoft Cloud Authors: Jordan Sanders, Carmen Gonzalez, Pat Romanski, Keith Mayer, Jayaram Krishnaswamy

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The Economy and Fiscal Cliff Effect on Holiday Shopping

SOASTA®, Inc., the leader in cloud and mobile testing today announced the findings of its 2012 Economy and Fiscal Cliff Holiday Shopping Survey. Out of the 2,893 Americans surveyed online on behalf of SOASTA by Harris Interactive from December 11-13, 83% said they have concerns about the Fiscal Cliff but only 30% said it has made them buy less for the holidays, and 3% saying it has made them buy more.

The survey discovered the most popular time to shop for holiday gifts isn’t Black Friday or Cyber Monday – but right now. When asked when they had shopped or were planning to shop for holiday gifts 54% of Americans said they will shop between now and Christmas Day. The breakdown is as follows:

  • 54% - Now until Christmas
  • 37% - Before Thanksgiving
  • 24% - Black Friday
  • 23% - Cyber Monday
  • 10% - Green Monday (December 10th)
  • 7% - Thanksgiving
  • 2% - Will shop for holiday gifts on December 26th
  • 3% - Will shop for holiday gifts on December 27th and beyond

Most Americans (89%) believe this year’s holiday shopping season demonstrates the economy’s performance with 40% believing this year’s holiday shopping season so far is showing that the economy is getting better, 31% saying this year’s holiday shopping season demonstrates the economy is unchanged, and 18% believing this year’s holiday shopping season means the economy is getting worse.

Nine out of ten Americans plan to give holiday gifts this year with a majority of Americans (55%) saying they used online retail sites for their shopping and 46% who shopped in a brick and mortar store. A small percentage of Americans (12%) admitted they have made homemade gifts this year.

For Americans who shopped online for the holidays from a computer, 35% said the retail websites performed better than last year, while 7% said they performed worse, while 55% of these Americans noticed no change. For Americans using tablets for online shopping for the holidays, 44% said retail websites performed better than last year while 3% said they performed worse and 34% said there was no change. For Americans who shopped online for the holidays from a smartphone, 59% said retail websites performed better than last year while 6% said they performed worse and 26% said there was no change. The survey also discovered the percentage of Americans who own smart phones is now equal to the percentage of Americans who own regular mobile phones – 46% to 46%.

”With a majority of Americans shopping online for the holidays it’s more important than ever for websites and apps to work effectively,” said Tom Lounibos, SOASTA CEO. "SOASTA helps 12 out of the top 25 retailers ensure that their websites and applications are ready for millions of shoppers each year. Over 80% of American's have concerns about the fiscal cliff and 50% of them are planning to shop between now and Christmas, it is imperative that they have a great shopping experience this year.”


SOASTA is the leader in cloud and mobile testing. Its web and mobile test automation solution, CloudTest, enables developers, QA professionals and IT operations teams to test with unprecedented speed, scale and precision. The innovative product set streamlines test creation, automates provisioning and execution, and distills analytics to deliver actionable intelligence faster. With SOASTA, companies can have confidence that their applications will perform as designed, even in peak traffic. SOASTA’s customers include many of today’s most successful brands including American Girl, Chegg, Gilt Groupe, Hallmark, Intuit, Microsoft and Netflix. SOASTA is privately held and headquartered in Mountain View, Calif. For more information about SOASTA, please visit

Survey Methodology

This survey was conducted online within the United States between December 11-13, 2012 among 2,893 adults aged 18 and over by Harris Interactive on behalf SOASTA via its Quick Query omnibus product. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact William McCormick.

SOASTA is a registered trademark of SOASTA, Inc. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners. Other product or company names mentioned may be trademarks or trade names of their respective companies.

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