With a successful Black Friday and Thanksgiving having a record of four $1 billion days of sales, every retailer, whether a small business and large corporation, expected to see more of it. The holiday sales season was on a record pace that the economy had not seen consistently in a while. However, those sales numbers changed for the worst.
Holiday sales grew at the lowest since 2008 reported Fox News via the Associated Press. Sales were expected to grow 3 to 4 percent this year, however, they grew a low 0.7 percent for the two months before Christmas. Even in the midst of the 2008 recession, sales grew at 2 to 3 percent. In 2011, sales increased by 4 to 5 percent. "A lot of the Christmas spirit was left behind way back in Black Friday weekend. We had one reason after another for consumers to say, 'I'm going to stick to my list and not go beyond it.'", stated Marshal Cohen, chief research analyst at NPD Incorporated. It appears most shoppers planned to do the bulk of their shopping during the popular four-day sales extravaganza. Shoppers appeared to not be interested in buying more gifts after that.
Numerous of events had an affect on consumer spending this holiday season. Storm Sandy put the northeast region of the country in the position to spend their extra money on recovery. This part of the country accounts for 24 percent of total retail sales. The devastation of the Newtown shooting right before Christmas caused many Americans to center their attention elsewhere than shopping. The uncertainty of the economy and looming fiscal cliff going into 2013 weighed in also.
Online sales for the holidays grew at least 8.4 percent reported payments card company MasterCard. In contrast, Chase Paymentech released online sales went up 15.3 percent. Either way, retailers are happy they did gain ground online, which makes up 10 percent of holiday sales. Many shoppers utilized their smartphones, iPads, and more to find the best online deals. In addition to deals, online sales also increased due to retailers offering better deliveries. Retailers offered offered later cut-off dates and guaranteed delivery on Christmas Eve, along with free shipping.
Delivering online products fast is becoming more attractive to shoppers, even same-day delivery. Retailers like Wal-Mart, eBay and Macy's are currently offering same-day delivery of their products and testing these services throughout the US. Same-day delivery is as close as shoppers can get to a physical store, which they are able to save time and money. The retailer that can perform same-day delivery will be successful in the years to come.
Same-day couriers like A-1 Express is a viable option to help your order fulfillment and online growth. This San Diego courier is an experienced, professional courier with the ability to fast! From small packages to palletized freight, A-1 Express can help retailers implement courier logistic solutions to meet online demand and expand quickly nationwide.
Reference: 12.26.12. Associated Press, US retailers report weakest holiday sales since 2008; Internet Retailer, Zak Stambor, Mixed messages on holiday sales