It is no surprise that Christmas and Hanukkah holiday celebrations are sneaking up on us, and this past weekend was Super Saturday, the second to last Saturday before Christmas. It’s the most popular weekend for holiday shopping as most retail stores push store promotions of 40 to 50 percent off. According to the WWD article, “Super Saturday Not So Super,” there was an increase in foot traffic at retail stores and sales, but the frigid weather and ice storms really hurt their potential goals to sell as much as they hoped.
I noticed a lot of New Yorkers out and about this past weekend, but the cold snow and freezing weather really made me want to stay warm inside. Online shopping is the answer these days for shoppers looking to get a quick gift for family or friends. Not only is it simple to sit behind a computer and do a one-click order on Amazon, but these days there are free returns and shipping. There’s no doubt return rates are going to skyrocket and in turn affect the margins of retail stores in the long run. The sales may be initially at higher prices, but the items that are returned and subsequently sold will be at the lower prevailing selling price. If customers choose to return it after the holidays, the retailers will absorb that shipping and return cost and take the hit.
I noticed that there were a lot of holiday promotions that helped most retail stores get rid of extra inventory. Lululemon took advantage of a promotion where they emailed customers gift cards of $25, with no minimum purchase, that are valid through Jan. 29. Lululmon rarely offers discount so I thought this was quite clever of them as retail stores have had a hard time selling in-store due to the increase of digital sales and holiday promotions on ecommerce sites like Amazon.
I found this to be an interesting article that shared a lot about the retail business trends versus online shopping during the holiday season. Most stores should take advantage of these holiday promotions because the holiday shopping season is the best time of year to get rid of older styles in order to start fresh for the new year. Overall, it was concluded that retail sales remained in check and actually increased slightly compared to previous years this holiday season.
Stay warm and happy holiday shopping!