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Holiday 2022: Subscriptions are the Stars

70% of consumers want subscriptions, Millennials and Gen Z lead the demand; Streaming video, gaming and audio top requested

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – Oct. 25, 2022 – Subscriptions are the shining stars for the 2022 holiday season. According to a new survey conducted by Recurly, a leading subscription management and billing platform, this holiday season will be big for gifting subscriptions, with 63% of consumers reporting that they’d be interested in gifting a subscription and 70% saying they’d be interested in receiving a subscription themselves. In fact, Gen Z and Millennials lead the charge with 72% interested in receiving subscriptions as gifts.

Who’s on the list?

When it comes to giving gifts, of those consumers surveyed, close family members (60%), significant others (55%) and friends (49%) will receive the most gifts this year, and not any gift will do. Shoppers are looking for thoughtful (75%) and useful (70%) gifts, which is where personalization comes in. Personalizing subscription purchases, or giving a gift card option so the recipient can personalize their own subscription experience, meets gift-giving criteria. Gift cards show as one of the top gifting categories (50%) people would like to give – and receive – this holiday season.

What’s the perfect price point?

Both convenience and cost are key for consumers who are looking to gift subscriptions this holiday season. Consumers specifically report interest in gifting subscriptions because they are:

  • Easy to purchase: 53%

  • Easy to budget: 45%

  • Easy to deliver: 41%

More than half of the consumers surveyed (58%) say the current economy will impact the way they approach gift-giving this year, with 35% shopping for more deals. The majority (72%) of consumers surveyed are looking to spend under $100 on a subscription as a gift, and most consumers report that they would be interested in giving at least a six-month subscription (61%).

“Consumers are looking for useful, thoughtful gifts, and that speaks directly to the strengths of gift subscriptions,” said Theresa McEndree, Chief Marketing Officer at Recurly. “Consumers can try a new brand, or share something they already love, and there are so many subscription options. There is something perfect for everyone on the list - from the pet-lover to the gamer to the foodie.”

One for you, one for me

Consumers report that the top reasons they like receiving subscriptions as a gift is that it:

  • Allows them to experience something new (60%) 

  • Offers a variety of carefully selected options to choose from (44%)

  • Allows them to choose what they want (40%)

  • Provides exclusive access to their favorite brands (36%)

Streaming video (54%), gaming (39%), and streaming audio (36%) are the top three categories most likely to be given as a gift, and more than half reported that they would continue a subscription if they found it fun, useful, or helpful (52%).

For additional information about gifting subscriptions, subscription management and recurring billing, see Recurly provides a flexible and scalable subscription platform to support subscription commerce for thousands of brands globally. Recurly helps companies scale subscriber growth by optimizing the consumer experience while reducing the operating cost of managing recurring billing and payments.

About Recurly

Thousands of innovative companies across digital media, streaming, publishing, SaaS, education, consumer goods, and professional services industries rely on Recurly to unlock transformational growth using subscriptions. Recurly’s all-in-one, integrated platform removes the complexities of automating subscriptions at scale by enabling teams to manage and optimize their subscriber lifecycles with ease. Category-defining companies including Sling, Twitch, BarkBox, FabFitFun, Paramount, Lucid, and Sprout Social have chosen Recurly to manage billions of dollars in recurring revenues, future-proof their recurring billing and revenue management, and recover millions of dollars in lost revenue due to churn. Founded in 2009, Recurly is based in San Francisco, with offices in Boulder and London. For more information, visit

About the “Consumer and Subscriber Gifts for the Holiday Season” survey

The “Consumer and Subscriber Gifts for the Holiday Season” survey is based on findings of an internet-based survey conducted by Recurly on Sept. 8, 2022. The sample size included 2,472 Americans ages 18 and older that are planning to give gifts this holiday season.

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