With the confidence of consumers rising this holiday season the culture of merchandisers in various industries has been to increase advertising. Advertising is a way for consumers to make informed decisions when they comparison shop for items they want for Christmas this year. Bombarding consumers with commercials over the past several weeks means it is beginning to look a lot like Christmas. With this in mind there are top shopping trends worth watching this Holiday season.

The National Retail Federation has terrific numbers for the 2012 Holiday season. Clothes shopping, electronic shopping and every other merchant can expect higher sales over last year.

Holiday sales for 2012 Christmas season are expected to increase over 4% compared with last year to nearly $586 billion which is wonderful for retailers along with every other industry. Eventually the economic impact will benefit the entire nation. Anytime more money is spent into the American economy everyone benefits.

These are the top trends worth watching this Holiday season to get the most bang for the buck;

Online shopping is looking great for the shopping season

Popular online sites for sales will see a boost as well as their brick and mortar counterparts. Online shopping site sales will really takeoff and increase selling over 12% compared with the 2011 holiday season to the tune of $86 billion according to the National Retail Federation.

Not only are shoppers looking to buy new fashion trends, but vintage trends and online electronic stores will really realize a bump in retailing according to the experts.

Online shopping sites sales will increase

Online shopping has continually increased since the inception of Cyber Monday. Retailers and shoppers have worked out the kinks and the process is smooth as silk. Over half of all consumers surveyed admit they have plans to Christmas shop online this season. This number is up over 5% from last year. Stores that have online shopping and brick and mortar stores will really see their bottom line looking great.

Daily deal sites such as Groupon and Living Social are extremely attractive sources for many people. Not only are shoppers using the daily deal sites for goods, but restaurants and things like travel will get more patrons with more money spent this in 2012.

Gift cards remain popular

Gift cards are one of the best gifts to give. This is a gift that has become a fan of “the hard to buy for” people on a gift list as well as teenagers and coworkers. Gift cards are not only great for the gift giver, but the gift receiver loves gift cards as well.

Surveys show 60% of those asked whether they would like to receive a gift card for Christmas answer yes. When compared with 50% of people admitting they want clothes, gift cards are still the best bet for nearly any gift you aren’t certain about. You cannot go wrong buying gift cards for Christmas.

More money spent means more jobs created for the holidays

One of the biggest ways that a holiday season with more spending helps the economy is more jobs become available. This is great for everyone in America. Not only do local retailers hire more employees, but big businesses like the US Postal Service will also increase their workforce by 55,000 employees this year.

Large retail stores such as Kohl’s admit they will hire over 52,000 workers for the 2012 holiday season which is an average of 41 new workers for each of Kohl’s stores around the nation.

Christmas wish list top requests are electronics

Electronics continue to be the most popular gift on the wish-list after gift cards. Electronics like flat screen televisions, cell phones (especially prepaid with unlimited talk and text) and tablets are what consumers want this year says the National Retail Federation.

As technology expands and grows customers continue to spend the big bucks for the latest equipment and retailers are offering great deals on these items.

Layaway and price matching are popular with customers

Customers are attracted to layaway and price matching offers. Merchants that offer both will see a surge with the number of shoppers coming through their door during the holidays.

Black Friday is getting bigger

Black Friday is getting started earlier with bigger sales and deals. The early bird specials are growing larger with big box stores as well as smaller retailers getting in on the biggest day of shopping for this Christmas.

The big box stores are scheduled to start their Black Friday sales at earlier times this year. Stores like Wal-Mart will open doors at 8pm on Thursday before Black Friday and Best Buy and Kohl’s are predicted to be ready at midnight on Thanksgiving for shopping.

Other gifts besides electronics are also hot

Although electronics and gift cards top the wish list, there are some other gifts on the list that are hot. Books and DVDs will be selling great. Videos, especially video games that go along with electronics, are on more than one third of all gift lists.

In conclusion

A number of studies show people have more spending money this holiday season and will certainly buy more according to retail trends for 2012. The holiday budgets have increased this year because believe it or not, people are showing higher incomes over last year according to a number of state economic agencies.

Cyber Monday sales are increasing each year

Cyber Monday sales are increasing this year