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Holiday Shopping Tops Expectations

December Sales Top Predictions

The Coronavirus pandemic continues to impact the globe, making it hard to find normalcy in day to day life. Holiday shoppers did not allow this to deter them from spending during the final month of the holiday shopping season. Today, the National Retail Federation announced that holiday sales were up a whopping 8.3% year over year in 2020.

Purchases reflected pandemic trends, including upticks for DIY and cooking purchases. This was prevalent in gift giving at our home, as our gifts were mostly focused on improving our skills in the kitchen.

Non-store sales see biggest gains

It was no surprise that non-store sales, garnered from e-commerce, mail order, and infomerials, saw the largest uptick with 22% growth over last year based on U.S. Census Bureau data. Although consumers are eager to spend money, they are still wary to make the trek out into stores for all of their shopping needs.

Winning and losing segments

One of the biggest surprises came from a nearly 16% decline in electronics sales and a 15% decline in apparel. Harkening back to those pandemic buying models, consumers moved away from the categories that have recently dominated the holiday gift giving landscape. Department stores, which were once the giants of the holiday shopping landscape, took a 22% nosedive this holiday season. Reduced foot traffic and buy online, pick up in store (BOPIS) options certainly impacted transaction totals - where normally consumers spend time perusing storewide selections before checking out.

Where do stores go from here?

With such a strong holiday showing, retailers may be seeing a turning point in consumer spending. As vaccines continue to roll out worldwide, retailers should be ready for the return of shoppers who crave an experience and expect it to exceed their expectations. Allow our experts to create the ideal product experience to convert browsers into buyers for you. Contact us today.