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Deloitte survey: Consumers still spending on holidays despite economic concern

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York City — Despite concerns about the economy and rising household expenses, nearly three out of five (59%) of consumers will put aside economic worries and spend the same or more this holiday season, according to Deloitte’s 26th annual survey of holiday spending intentions and trends. While this is a slight decline from 2010, it represents an eight percentage point increase from 2009.

“Lackluster employment growth, debt crises and stock market fluctuations have battered consumer confidence while inflation left many with lighter wallets this fall,” said Alison Paul, vice chairman and U.S. retail & distribution leader, Deloitte LLP. “Consumers will be conservative this holiday season, but remain resilient and maintain a more positive interest in holiday shopping than we witnessed during the recession.”

Among holiday shopping destinations, the Internet and discount stores are at the top of the list, with 48%) of consumers planning to shop these two destinations for holiday gifts. While online interest climbed, discounters slid 10 percentage points from the 2010.

More than one-quarter (27%) of smartphone owners plan to use their devices for holiday shopping to search for store locations (67%), compare prices (59%) and check product availability (46%). Additionally, 44% plan to use social media to seek discounts, read reviews and check family and friends’ gift lists.

“Consumers are using online and mobile platforms to make the most of their holiday budgets, and the survey indicates that they will do more than just compare prices,” said Paul. “Retailers that use mobile and online channels to show product availability, locations and pricing but add customized promotions and gift ideas may encourage shoppers to come in the door for a specific gift and take additional items to the register.”

In other survey findings:

  • Of the 68% of consumers who plan to change the way they shop to save money, 51% plan to head online to find better prices – up 10% from last year – while 46% plan to buy more items that qualify for free shipping.
  • More than half of consumers (53%) plan to begin shopping before Thanksgiving, but 73% intend to hold out until after this holiday to make the majority of their purchases.
  • Apparel ranked as the most popular holiday gift (48%), followed by gift cards (45%, down 11% from last year).
  • Higher-income households’ gift spending will hold up while middle- and lower-income groups are paring back. Households earning $100,000 or more annually expect to trim gift spending by 2% to shell out an average of $812 on gifts, compared with a 26% drop to $291 on gifts among those earning less than $100,000.

For more on the survey, go to deloitte.com/us/2011HolidaySurvey.

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News

Amazon Kindles sales, but profits disappoint

BY CSA STAFF

SEATTLE — The popularity of Amazon.com’s Kindle e-readers continues to help boost Amazon.com’s sales. However, net income for the third quarter was disappointing.

Amazon.com reported that net sales for the third quarter increased44% to $10.88 billion in the third quarter, compared with $7.56 billion in third quarter 2010.Net income decreased 73% to $63 million in the third quarter, or 14 cents per diluted share, compared with net income of $231 million, or 51 cents per diluted share, in third quarter 2010.

“September 28th was the biggest order day ever for Kindle, even bigger than previous holiday peak days – we introduced Kindle Fire for $199, Kindle Touch 3G for $149, Kindle Touch for $99, and our all new Kindle for only $79,” said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com. “In the three weeks since launch, orders for electronic ink Kindles are double the previous launch. And based on what we’re seeing with Kindle Fire pre-orders, we’re increasing capacity and building millions more than we’d already planned.”

For the fourth quarter, Amazon.com expects net sales to be between $16.45 billion and $18.65 billion, or to grow between 27% and 44% compared with fourth quarter 2010.Operating income (loss) is expected to be between $(200) million and $250 million, or between 142% decline and 47% decline compared with fourth quarter 2010.

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HOT CONCEPTS

Pollo Campero Debuts New Prototype

BY Marianne Wilson

Pollo Campero, the fast-growing Latin chicken chain, unveiled a new prototype designed by Interbrand Design Forum. Created with the American consumer in mind, the new design debuted in Webster, Texas. Two other locations are due to open in the Houston area by yearend.

“Pollo Campero is a huge hit in Central America, but it needed to be brought to the U.S. in a bigger and more relevant way,” said Tom Kowalski, VP design, Interbrand Design Forum. “Research showed that the logo and the exterior didn’t do enough to convey the authenticity of the food or the level of service that are found inside.”

The new environment is bright and full of bold colors. Throughout the space, dynamic angles and intersecting planes convey passion and energy, while the colorful palette and textures offer an authentic Latin feel. The tile floor is designed with color breaks and interesting angles to create energy.

Materials, including multi-colored ceramic tiles on the front of the counters, add depth and warmth while stainless steel and glass emphasize culinary expertise.

“Collectively, the imagery, positioning of our fresh Latin flavors and our new logo signals that we are a forward-thinking brand that still cherishes our rich brand heritage,” said Lisken Kastalaynch, VP marketing, Pollo Campero, which operates more than 300 restaurants in 12 countries around the globe. “We believe this modern iteration of our concept will make us more accessible to a wider range of American consumers,”

Currently, Pollo Campero operates approximately 50 U.S. locations, with plans for additional sites.



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L.Jandayan says:
Mar-07-2013 10:50 am

When business involves food
When business involves food there would be an 80% assurance that it would really go for a success result. People are really attracted to food chains especially with a more cheaper price compared to the competitors. - J. Kale Flagg

L.Jandayan says:
Mar-07-2013 10:50 am

When business involves food there would be an 80% assurance that it would really go for a success result. People are really attracted to food chains especially with a more cheaper price compared to the competitors. - J. Kale Flagg

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