Retailers Need to Tap Into the Christmas Spirit to Hit Holiday Sales Goals
The Christmas Season came in hot and fast this year. Retailers hope consumer spending continues strong in December in order to hit their Holiday sales targets.
The football season may be winding down, but the big “Kickoff” event that is usually Black Friday for retailers every year, happened this year more at the “halftime” mark. What’s telling: Black Friday and Cyber Monday were not as strong as some had hoped this year.
Analysts expect retail sales will hit lofty expectations, there is just a lack of the usual holiday buzz of excitement. Shoppers started buying their holiday gifts early, amid reports that among logistical issues, inflated prices, and stores who may be facing not just product delays, but staffing shortages as well – could detract from their experience.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales averages were down, year-over-year from 2020, both in number of consumers shopping, but also the average amount spent on holiday related purchases (for example, Black Friday numbers were down from $361.90 in 2019 – to $311.75 in 2020 – this year was $301.27)
The largest retailers still promoted holiday deals and sales, as early as October, adding to consumer worries that there may not be product available or the gifts they want to purchase. Early Holiday shopping may have taken away from Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales numbers, but retailers can still pull together a strong December and hit their sales goals!
In fact, the National Retail Federation (NRF) is standing by its forecast for a record holiday season, projecting sales during November and December to rise anywhere from 8.5% to 10.5%, with a possible $859 billion in holiday sales.
To hit these lofty sales expectations, retailers will need to overcome consumer fears of a new strain of the coronavirus and entice consumers to buy despite deals that are harder to come by.
Discounts on electronics averaged 12% compared to 27% last year – other categories like TVs and Appliances also dwindled from 5-12% less than 2020’s discount percentages. Discounts are expected to fade further as we near Christmas, according to Adobe.
However, the omicron variant could do the opposite and actually DRIVE sales for retailers. Some consumers who would have bought a trip, tickets to an event, or another gift involving an experience could purchase goods instead. There is confidence in retail’s trajectory and in the overall economy for this holiday season.
Nationwide Southwest suggests to our Members to be prepared for shoppers to return to the stores and websites, since they likely still have plenty of gifts to buy. Use messaging to highlight what you offer that Big Box doesn’t – YOU! Your team of employees offer service that is second-to-none!
Utilize extended discounts where possible, shoppable events (toy/coat/sock drive in store for the needy in your community!), and feature new merchandise to really grab consumers’ attention and help offset the December lull.
We are here to assist our Members any way we can to help you cross the 2021 Christmas Sales Goal line!
By: Allicia Hendrix, Marketing Specialist – Nationwide Southwest – America’s Marketing Group