It's officially less than a week until Christmas, and consumers are slightly farther along in checking off their lists than last year.
According to the National Retail Federation, as of Dec. 10, the average holiday shopper had completed 52.9 percent of their spending, up from 49.9 percent from the same period in 2013.
One explanation for consumers getting ahead this year is an increased number of—and earlier—promotions. Deutsche Bank on Wednesday released a report showing there is modestly increased markdown activity this year, citing Wal-Mart, Target, Kohl's and Macy's as retailers who are giving buyers more incentive to purchase items.
That's rising off of 2013, which many analysts considered to be the most promotional holiday on record.
Some shoppers told CNBC that they're seeing better and more sales at stores like Banana Republic and Gap, prompting them to spend there instead of the discount stores they've traditionally visited, so they can get more bang for their buck.