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Physical stores still best for last-minute buys

May 9, 2008

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Overall, about 19.7 percent of Internet users in the U.S. that were surveyed by BIGresearch for the National Retail Federation's "2008 Mother's Day Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey" said they will go online to buy their mothers gifts.

But the majority of consumers looking to buy their moms something will use specialty stores, discount stores and department stores to ensure mom gets her gift on time. Those who do shop online may do so to save time and money.

Overall, respondents in the survey said they planned to spend an average of a bit less than $140 for Mother's Day this year, compared with about $132 in 2007.

The National Retail Federation (NRF) said it expected total consumer spending to reach $15.8 billion.

BIGresearch vice president Phil Rist said that "overall, gas prices and other similar economic issues will still be at the forefront of people's minds as they shop around for the perfect gift for their mother."

Similar research that was sponsored by Discovery Card recently and conducted by Caravan Opinion Research Corp. surveyed American adults, not just Internet users. A slightly smaller percentage of respondents (16 percent) said they would do their Mother's Day shopping online compared with the NRF study.

But the NRF did note that, on average, mothers are some of the heaviest Internet users per capita.

Some U.S. adults will be using the Internet for more than Mother's Day shopping. Although the majority of respondents to a Brand Keys study said they planned to call or visit their mom on Mother's Day, about 5 percent said they also planned to contact their mother online.

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Source: The National Retail Federation.

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