On the heels of a positive Q3 sales period, this holiday season should be a reasonably good one across Canada and the US and in the UK. 2012 Holiday Spending forecasts are expected to rise 2% in Canada, and that’s despite losing a lot of sales to cross border shopping. South of the border sales will grow almost 4% on continuing American consumer optimism.
Cross border shopping by Canadians is having a strong impact on Canadian border towns and beyond. Canadians are buying everything from furniture to electronics to airfare in Buffalo, Bellingham, Seattle, Burlington, Watertown, and other border cities. They’re willing to travel 100 miles to shop in a US city and with more liberal Canadian customs/duties rules, they are responding by increasing their US shopping.
The brick and mortar retail sector is facing challenges and that means manufacturers and brand managers will have to improve their instore promotions to maintain sales volume. Is this what you expect? Are you about to use price discounts, value packs, free samples, POP promotion, or packaging redesign to improve sales this holiday season?
It’s the perfect time for temporary POP displays and shelf talkers. Don’t commit to your packaging execution until you’ve spoken with a Canadian packaging company in Markham. Ravenshoe offers eveything from design to fulfillment and that can save a lot of time and expense in managing different vendors.
One trend expected for Xmas 2012 is that shoppers will be checking prices online before shopping. The omnipresent smartphone is having an impact on shoppers purchase decisions. Digital couponing is seeing a rise as well. Given the loss of shoppers, you should be more aggressive with your promotions to ensure you capture the maximum instore sales. Avoiding price discounts is a wise choice. Read up on shopper solutions and take a look at a variety of POP displays that might give you some promotional ideas for 2013.
Big Holiday Season in the US
Deloitte just released their annual 2012 Annual Holiday Survey which reveals Americans are in an upbeat mood this year. There is uncertainty regarding the effect of the election, yet the housing sector is performing well and Americans are expecting better employment and income in 2013. Hurricane Sandy’s destruction may have an effect on holiday shopping as well. One key piece is of data is regarding shoppers who intend to spend less – that’s at its lowest level since 2006.
In the US, Deloitte forecasts 3.5% to 4% increase in holiday sales, but that’s much less than last year’s 5.9% increase. Their survey suggests a 15% to 17% growth in non-store sales. Nearly 75% of non brick and mortar retail store sales will come online sources and from catalogs and interactive TV.
The company found that shoppers intend to shop earlier, but still mostly in December and they will buy fewer gifts.
Further, Deloitte expects smartphone-influenced retail store sales will account for 5.1%, or $36 billion in retail store sales this year during the holiday season. That will be driven by consumers’ store-related smartphone activity such as product research, price comparison or mobile application use.