In spite of the noise and the crowds, shoppers spent over $10B on black Friday, which was a modest increase from last year. Overall, the weekend produced over $45B in sales, according to the National Retail Federation, with a lot more foot traffic than last year. Weekend shoppers, after having not found the deals they were looking for, may obviously then turn to the web, with the so-called cyber Monday.
Online retailers saw an overall 15.9% sales growth between Black Friday 2009 and Black Friday 2010. The price of the average order also rose 12.1% from around $170 per order to $190.80, according to Coremetrics, so share from the brick and mortar has moved a bit to online, as it continues to year by year.
Wow, Christmas is so luminous! But it takes some of the luster off with markdowns already in place at the peak of the shopping season!Lots of shopping, but we have yet to understand what has been given up to get the traffic, with markdowns already in place.
Not all retailers had such modest results. Many are exceeding goals and taking share from less relevant and progressive. (You can see some Times Square shopping frenzy at Macey’s in this video.) Strong brand retailers and those that have developed the merchandising knack and strategies fare better in these times.
Also, some products, as usual, will be the must haves for the season. Obviously these shoppers were concerned about missing those!
Various discussions on holding the line on taxes, providing continuation of unemployment, etc. are all on the table, and may yet impact the total sales for the season.
With 24 days left to go, we have yet to understand the end-game for the season. It will be interesting to see how the lame duck Congress can impact the consumer market. At 70% of the US economy, they may be a bit concerned, if sales and profits aren’t so good.
To view other articles from this issue of the brief, click here.