Deloitte: Holiday Retail Sales to Climb at Least 5.0%
This year’s holiday-related retail spending forecasts are starting to appear. Deloitte’s first crack at the numbers has come in at between a 5.0% and 5.6% increase over last year's final results. Several factors are contributing to this robust prediction. Here’s what your clients need to know.
Last year, holiday sales increases amounted to 5.5% over the previous year. That figure surpassed the National Retail Federation’s initial forecast of 3.6% to 4 percent. In, total consumers shelled out over $691.9 billion for various products and services in 2017. Categories with particularly strong growth included building materials and supplies stores (8.1%), furniture and home furnishings (7.5%) and electronics and appliance stores (6.7%). Online sales were strong with Digital Commerce 360 reporting a 14.7% increase over the previous year.
Analysts see many of the same growth factors driving this year’s holiday sales season. The economy remains strong, unemployment is low and consumer confidence continues to increase. Daniel Bachman, Deloitte’s US economic forecaster points out that personal income growth will likely amount to between 5% and 5.4 percent. And the savings rate is at 7 percent.
E‑commerce sales are likely to be particularly strong. Deloitte predicts an increase of up to 22% over last year. Your bricks and mortar clients should be prepared to work hard for their share of consumer spending, which will exceed $1.1 trillion this fall. Shoppers are likely to feel optimistic and be in good moods. They’re not just looking for gifts, they also enjoy being entertained. Retailers that set up in-store experiences and allow shoppers to experiment with web-based visualization are in a great position to increase sales. Retailers have also upped their strategies to compete with online specialists. For example, more retailers are allowing shoppers to order items in store and promise fast and free delivery.
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