Will Super Saturday be the most super ever?

Discussion
Photo: RetailWire
Dec 16, 2022

Tomorrow is going to be a big day for retail, perhaps the biggest.

A record number of consumers, 158.5 million, are expected to go shopping tomorrow (AKA Super Saturday), according to a forecast by the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics.

The number of people shopping in-person and online is expected to be about 10 percent higher than last year and will represent the highest figure since NRF began tracking the statistic back in 2016.

“Consumers have been shopping in record numbers this year, purchasing holiday items for friends and loved ones,” Matthew Shay, president and CEO of NRF, said in a statement. “With Super Saturday falling eight days before Christmas, retailers are prepared to help shoppers fulfill their last-minute purchases that will make this holiday season memorable.”

Retailers will need to have their unified commerce boots on tomorrow to meet the demands of shoppers. Twenty-eight percent of those shopping plan to do so entirely in stores, according to the survey. Twenty-seven percent expect to shop from their phones or homes and 46 percent plan to shop in stores and online.

Yesterday’s U.S. Census Bureau report showing that monthly retail sales fell 0.6 percent in November compared to October (up 1.3 percent) points to Americans’ search for deals in the current inflationary environment.

Amazon.com, Target and Walmart were among a group of retailers that went big with large sales events in October. A record number of consumers went shopping for more deals between Thanksgiving Day and Cyber Monday. November and October posted year-over-year sales gains of 6.5 and 8.3 percent respectively.

Super Saturday will have its share of deals, as well. Insider Intelligence cites Amazon’s “Very Merry Deals” promotion, which will run through Dec. 21.

Target is cutting prices on kitchen appliances, toys and video games and promoting free same-day pickup on all orders placed before six in the evening on Christmas Eve.

Walmart is holding its “Save Big” sales on items across the store, including clothing, food, seasonal decor and foods.

Best Buy’s “20 Days of Deals” ends Dec. 18.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: How important will Super Saturday be to retail’s final results for the 2022 holiday selling season? What is your evaluation of how retailers, in general, have responded to the challenges that they’ve faced in 2022?

Please practice The RetailWire Golden Rule when submitting your comments.
Braintrust
"Super Saturday is still relevant, as the last Saturday to shop before the holidays, but I predict shoppers have crossed most of the gifts off Santa’s outstanding list by now."
"I think when the retailers hit the promotional markdown point very soon, it will resound with lots of last days shoppers."
"So far, this holiday is shaping up to be pretty strong for most retailers. There seems to be a lot of momentum going into Super Saturday."

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19 Comments on "Will Super Saturday be the most super ever?"


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Mark Ryski
BrainTrust

Super Saturday is important, but it is only one day. All retailers are sprinting to the end of the holiday season and, all things considered, it looks like a pretty good holiday season for most. 2022 has certainty seen ups and downs as inflation roared and supply-chain issues lingered for many retailers. But when you add it all up, I believe retailers managed the challenges of 2022 reasonably well, and some did very well.

Paula Rosenblum
BrainTrust

There has to be some level of markdown fatigue setting in with consumers. Every week, every day is “the biggest day.” I think we have to start looking at seasons again. From October through January. Sometimes you can have too much of a good thing.

Carol Spieckerman
BrainTrust

The holiday shopping season has turned into a promotional marathon that is punctuated by events. Super Saturday will be the exclamation point as the last weekend shopping day before Christmas (unless you count the daredevils that shop on Christmas Eve). Retailers are pulling out all the stops, inflation is deflating, gas prices are moderating. It should be a big weekend.

Richard Hernandez
BrainTrust

I do not know if this will move the needle in regards to shoppers being in stores. Sales started in late September and have been advertised everyday since. I see a lot fewer cars in malls and power centers. Either people are waiting or have completed their shopping due to economic changes this season.

Gary Sankary
BrainTrust

So far, this holiday is shaping up to be pretty strong for most retailers. There seems to be a lot of momentum going into Super Saturday. Given the decline in inflation and plummeting gas prices, I expect that many consumers are a bit more optimistic than they were a few weeks ago. I anticipate this will help drive traffic and help many retailers deliver better results than we expected back in October.

Dave Bruno
BrainTrust

I suspect this weekend will be important, sure, but I just don’t think consumers feel a real urgency to get their shopping done in the next two days. Most consumers are struggling to keep track of the deluge of promotions and offers flooding their inboxes, and most extend beyond the weekend anyway. Most fail to create any real urgency to shop on the weekend. As a result, I think shopping deadlines have become far more important to most consumers than promotion deadlines, and as long as they have confidence that their online purchases will arrive before the holiday, they will shop as their schedules permit.

Lisa Goller
BrainTrust

Retailers need a Super Saturday win to help compensate for 2022’s challenges. Inflation, excess inventory, labor shortages and lower consumption squeezed profits. Now retailers seek top line growth.

Many retailers adapted well with process automation, agile pricing, marketing investments and supply chain collaboration. Discovering efficiencies and unlocking new growth will be 2023 retail priorities.

Georganne Bender
BrainTrust

Super Saturday will be big because it’s another one of those days we have trained consumers to shop. But I doubt it will live up to Panic Saturday, its other name. There are a full six days after it to shop or grab those last minute things you need.

Paula Rosenblum
BrainTrust

And then there are gift cards, which will allow shoppers to buy exactly what they want, at the lowest prices post-Christmas. And gift cards don’t count as sales until they are redeemed, so January has to be in the mix.

Dick Seesel
BrainTrust

The calendar is tricky this year because there is an “extra Saturday” (the 24th) before Christmas. The strength of this weekend’s sales depends on whether shoppers need to ship packages out of town — which may boost e-commerce sales where delivery dates are still feasible. If consumers are buying for “closer to home,” they have plenty of time to procrastinate.

David Naumann
BrainTrust

That is an excellent point Dick. Based on the day that Christmas Eve falls, there is an extra Saturday of shopping. The shopping procrastinators will take advantage of the last minute shopping and hope to get even better deals.

Jeff Sward
BrainTrust

The end is in sight. End of the season that is. There’s not a lot of wiggle room left to hit January EOM inventory plans and start Spring 2023 with well positioned inventory. Retailers might be looking at weeks of supply (WOS) or days of inventory (DOI), but by any metric the race to clear seasonal products is on. The customers, too, are almost out of time. So the promotional dance is on. We are about to find out if the softness in November sales was deferral or an actual pullback.

Heidi Sax
BrainTrust

The deals that started running in October meant that consumers got a big head start on the shopping season. At Wizard, early access campaigns especially drove over 30 percent more revenue than campaigns sent on and after Black Friday. Super Saturday is still relevant, as the last Saturday to shop before the holidays, but I predict that shoppers have crossed most of the gifts off Santa’s outstanding list by now.

Ryan Mathews
BrainTrust

It will be important, but not mission critical. Consumers have been buying steadily since this Holiday promotional period began somewhere around President’s Day this year. Retailers have done a decent job of bouncing back this year which — combined with some price declines in terms of gasoline, food, etc. — has gotten shoppers out early and apparently often. Look, any promotion helps. I guess what tomorrow will tell us is how many last minute shoppers there really are out there.

Doug Garnett
BrainTrust

It is always a very important shopping day for retailers. There is no reason to expect that to change.

Rich Kizer
BrainTrust

I think what has been happening at retail over the past 10 days has been interesting. Retailers have been promoting, but I have noticed a large number of people sniffing possible gifts, and at the same time leaving the stores to walk around and discover better deals. I think when the retailers hit the promotional markdown point very soon, it will resound with lots of last days shoppers.

Brian Cluster
BrainTrust

It is true that consumers have been trained to complete their final round of holiday shopping on Super Saturday over the years. However, since Christmas falls on a Sunday, many companies have Friday, December 23rd as a replacement day off. This day (12/23) will be another big day as shoppers look for last-minute deals to top off their gift-giving.

Retailers in the past few years have become more digitally mature and adept at implementing new consumer-facing digitally enabled programs. In 2022, retailers have shown greater flexibility in driving demand such as new store-within-a-store partnerships, better agile data management for omnichannel commerce, and digital tools to help consumers shop. There were plenty of challenges but most retailers faired well.

Craig Sundstrom
Guest

One day? Don’t really care how “super” it is, it’s not a big share of the season (and that’s not even looking at the likely shifting of shopping from other days to this one). It seems strange that even with shopping now being a 24/365 activity — literally — we seem to be even more focused on various contrived “days.”

Brad Halverson
Guest

Super Saturday for 2022 may be the last gasp for retailers to purge inventory and plump up sales numbers. Supply chain challenges since 2020 have created both shortages and overstocking, and in 2022 spiked inflation, furthering a hangover. So discounting and deals ought to be significant unless retailers want to be left with piles of product headed into 2023.

2023 will be an interesting year for a larger retail reset, focused on new expectations for inventory levels, more efficiencies, labor, operations and customer experience outcomes.

wpDiscuz
Braintrust
"Super Saturday is still relevant, as the last Saturday to shop before the holidays, but I predict shoppers have crossed most of the gifts off Santa’s outstanding list by now."
"I think when the retailers hit the promotional markdown point very soon, it will resound with lots of last days shoppers."
"So far, this holiday is shaping up to be pretty strong for most retailers. There seems to be a lot of momentum going into Super Saturday."

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