Holiday Off to Encouraging Start
to ShopperTrak RCT Corp. and the National
Retail Federation, sales on Black Friday and over the weekend came in better
than expected given the overall sorry state of the economy and consumer
confidence. The results were driven by early openings, numerous door-buster
specials and deep discounts overall.
to ShopperTrak, sales on Black Friday rose three percent to $10.6
significantly lower than the 8 percent gain last year and the smallest since a
decline of 0.9 percent in 2005, the results were still described as "encouraging."
truly experienced what we’ve dubbed the ‘perfect storm’ over the last few
weeks, with the financial markets melting down, the presidential election
which typically slows retail traffic and relatively high gasoline prices – all
of which slowed both retail traffic and spending," said Bill Martin,
co-founder of ShopperTrak, in a statement. "Under these circumstances,
to start off the season in this fashion is truly amazing and is a testament
to the resiliency of the American consumer, and undeniably proves a willingness
calling Black Friday an "encouraging start," Mr. Martin noted
that there’s no guarantee the deep discounts will continue after Black
Friday weekend to drive sales. Another challenge for the overall holiday
season for retailers is that consumers have 27 days to shop this year as
opposed to 32 in 2007, "which may catch some procrastinating consumers
off guard, leading to lower sales levels."
to the NRF’s 2008 Black Friday Weekend survey, conducted by BIGresearch,
more than 172 million shoppers visited stores and websites over Black Friday
weekend, up from 147 million shoppers last year. Shoppers spent an average
of $372.57 over the weekend, up 7.2 percent over last year’s $347.55. Total
spending reached an estimated $41 billion.
saw 73.6 million people hitting stores and websites. The survey found that
23.3 percent of shoppers were at stores by 5 a.m. while 57.6 percent were
at stores by 9 a.m.
56.9 million shopped on Saturday, up from 48.3 million last year, while
another 26.2 million people planned to shop on Sunday. On Thanksgiving
Day, 16.2 million people shopped versus 10.9 million the prior year.
demand on electronics and clothing, plus unparalleled bargains on this
season’s hottest items helped drive shopping all weekend," said NRF
president and CEO Tracy Mullin, in a statement.
"Holiday sales are not expected to continue at this brisk pace, but
it is encouraging that Americans seem excited to go shopping again."
Questions: How would you rate Black Friday’s performance? Were stores
overly promotional? How should stores adjust to keep up the momentum
for the rest of the 2008 holiday season?
Black Friday Performance Kicks Off Holiday Shopping Season – ShopperTrak
Friday’ Sales Rise 3%, ShopperTrak Says – Bloomberg News