3 On Your Side

Holiday online shopping to surge

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The report that was released by the NRF shows that 59 percent of holiday spending will be done online compared to 57 percent who plan to shop at a department store. (Source: 3TV) The report that was released by the NRF shows that 59 percent of holiday spending will be done online compared to 57 percent who plan to shop at a department store. (Source: 3TV)
With retailers like Walmart, Target, Best Buy and Amazon offering free shipping, there's a huge incentive for shoppers. (Source: 3TV) With retailers like Walmart, Target, Best Buy and Amazon offering free shipping, there's a huge incentive for shoppers. (Source: 3TV)
In an attempt to keep some consumers from abandoning brick and mortar stores altogether, some retailers will be offering sales that are only available in their stores. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) In an attempt to keep some consumers from abandoning brick and mortar stores altogether, some retailers will be offering sales that are only available in their stores. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Many consumers say online shopping is just too convenient to pass up. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Many consumers say online shopping is just too convenient to pass up. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(3 ON YOUR SIDE) -

The holiday shopping frenzy is kicking into high gear with the average consumer expected to spend more than $960. That's up 3.4 percent from a year ago.

But that's not all, according to financial coach Kelsa Dickey. Most of that money will be spent shopping online.

"According to the National Retail Federation, this year they are expecting online shopping to exceed brick and mortar shopping for the very first time ever," Dickey said.

[SLIDESHOW: Your guide to Black Friday deals, links, and store hours]

Dickey’s office is here in the Phoenix area and teaches consumers how to stay fiscally fit. The report that was released by the NRF shows that 59 percent of holiday spending will be done online compared to 57 percent who plan to shop at a department store.

With retailers like Walmart, Target, Best Buy and Amazon offering free shipping, Dickey says that's a huge incentive for shoppers.

"Amazon purchases are growing, delivery right to your door is getting faster. I think consumer confidence in these types of services is sort of a normal everyday thing is just strengthening," Dickey said.

[RELATED: Black Friday 2017: When will the stores open?]

If you're one of the many consumers who will be shopping online this holiday season, Dickey says you have to be careful. There are rogue websites designed to look like legitimate retailers and the web is the perfect place for scammers to hide. Still, many consumers say online shopping is just too convenient to pass up.

[RELATED: Target's Black Friday ad debuts with deals]

"I think if you're not careful there are definitely some pros and cons to online shopping. One of the pros is that you can very quickly shop around right online sitting at your computer instead of going to five different stores," Dickey said.

In an attempt to keep some consumers from abandoning brick and mortar stores altogether, some retailers will be offering sales that are only available in their stores.

So, be sure to check your favorite store's Black Friday flyer and Dickey reminds consumers to look for advertisements that say "in-store only" in the fine print before you make any purchase.

[READ MORE: Phoenix financial expert divulges strategy for Black Friday shopping]

"It's always best in whichever form you actually do the shopping to try and plan ahead to verify the prices, research prices, how you can get the best price," she said.

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Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


Gary HarperGary Harper is the senior consumer and investigative reporter for 3 On Your Side at KTVK-TV.

Click to learn more about Gary.

Gary Harper
3 On Your Side

With more than 20 years of television experience, Gary has established himself as a leader in the industry when it comes to assisting viewers and resolving their consumer-related issues. His passion and enthusiasm have helped him earn an Emmy for Best Consumer Reporter from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He’s also garnered several Emmy nominations

He has negotiated resolutions with companies of all sizes, including some of the biggest corporations in the nation.

Gary has successfully recouped more than $1 million for viewers around the state, making 3 On Your Side one of the most popular segments on KTVK and the station's Web site.

He's best known for investigating and confronting unscrupulous contractors. In fact, many of his news reports have led to police investigations and jail time for those who were caught. Viewers, as well as the companies and people he investigates, regard him as consistently being thorough and fair.

Gary has been with KTVK-TV since 1997. Prior to his arrival in Phoenix, he worked for WZZM-TV in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he was as an anchor and reporter.

Gary is from Chicago, but launched his television career in Lubbock, Texas, after earning a broadcast journalism degree from Texas Tech University. Following his graduation, he was quickly hired by KLBK-TV in Lubbock, where he enterprised and broke numerous exclusive reports. His aggressive reporting in Texas helped garner him Best Reporter by the Associated Press.

Gary has been married since 1994 and is the proud father of two sons. When he's not helping viewers, Gary is busy catching up on his favorite college and professional football teams as well as cheering on his beloved Texas Tech Red Raiders.

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