Wow! Our latest results from the Google/OTX Consumer Pulse Check survey reveal that as of last week, half of US consumers have already made holiday gift purchases for this season! This is a good sign that shoppers are not simply shopping earlier today to research, but also following through to buy now when they find the right gift with the right price as opposed to later. We have been checking in with consumers regularly since late August; as you can see from the charts below, their steady increases in holiday purchasing and holiday researching throughout the past weeks go hand in hand.

Note to Retailers: For those who may think holiday shopping does not start until after Thanksgiving, think again, because holiday shopping clearly began 11 weeks ago (if not longer)! Consumers are becoming savvy and prepared holiday shoppers -- while we may all "hold out" for the best holiday sales closer to the actual holidays, we are not waiting around to check off part of our shopping list now.