Most consumers plan to spend at least $500 for holidays

With the holiday shopping season approaching, a new study is indicating how much the average American will spend on gift purchases.

According to a poll conducted by online shopping site PriceGrabber and global information services company Experian, more than 50 percent of consumers say they will spend at least $500 on presents this season with 36 percent saying they will spend less than that total. Twelve percent said they don't have a budget.

The poll also polled consumers about when they thought they'd find some of the best deals in stores. In that regard, 57 percent said they would shop after the Thanksgiving holiday, while 28 percent specified "Black Friday," the day after Thanksgiving.

"Our survey findings indicate that more than half of respondents expect to find great bargains during the entire four weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas," said Graham Jones, PriceGrabber's general manager. He added that if consumers want to find low prices, it's best to combine brick-and-mortar shopping with online price hunting.

In the buying process, consumers would be wise to keep track of their financial histories, making sure there aren't any credit notations made that may adversely impact their credit scores.