Chicago Chief marketing officers at leading U.S. retailers expect both overall sales and same-store sales to increase by 2.6% and 1.4%, respectively, for the 2009 holiday season, according to accounting and consulting firm BDO Seidman, LLP.
Last year, the retailers included in the BDO Seidman Retail Compass Survey of chief marketing officers accurately predicted that overall sales for the 2008 holiday season would decrease by 2.8 %. According to the National Retail Federation, 2008 holiday retail sales were down 2.8% from the 2007 holiday season.
The retailers surveyed do have a positive outlook for the coming year. About 60% of respondents from the Top 100 retailers surveyed said they expect to see a meaningful turnaround in the economy by second quarter 2010. The vast majority of the retailers (77%) and nearly all of the retailers in the Top 100 (85%) predict a turnaround before third quarter 2010.
Most chief marketing officers (96%) expect to offer more discounts and promotions this holiday season, which is up from 88% last year and 73% in 2007. Most of the respondents (50%) cite that those discounts will take the form of in-store promotions, followed by markdowns (41%) and online promotions (9%).
Further, more than half (54%) of the retailers said they have reduced their inventory purchases for the holiday season. Those that reduced inventory did so by an average of 10%, reflecting a sizeable decrease in inventories.