FINANCE

ShopperTrak: Holiday season sales grew 3.5%, foot traffic declined 3.1%

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York City — ShopperTrak reported Monday that national retail sales, when compared with the same period last year, rose 3.5% during November and December, while foot traffic decreased 3.1%.

“We know stores saw less foot-traffic and increases in sales during the holiday season, indicating consumers were focused and took fewer trips,” said Bill Martin, ShopperTrak founder. “Retailers who tracked their foot-traffic daily better understood and predicted shopper trends and made the most of every opportunity that walked through their doors with appropriate inventory and staffing adjustments.”

Throughout the holiday season, ShopperTrak has estimated that consumers spent $251.4 billion dollars in GAFO retail sales. Sales rose 3.5% over 2010, but slightly lower than ShopperTrak’s forecast of a 3.7% increase.

The season started with four straight weeks of year-over-year sales gains in November, with Thanksgiving week having the largest year-over-year sales gain for the month — a 4.4% increase over the same period last year and $134.2 billion spent. Sales lagged in early December, as shoppers assessed their budgets after “Black Weekend.”

ShopperTrak said it also attributes December’s slow start to Hanukkah falling later in the month this year than it did in 2010, negatively affecting retail sales early on. Sales surged late in the season, however. The week before Christmas saw the season’s largest year-over-year sales gain of 14.4%, $193.7 billion spent and six of the season’s top 10 sales days occurred in the eight days prior to Christmas.

While shoppers bought more, they browsed less according to ShopperTrak. In-store foot-traffic decreased 3.1% for the 2011 holiday season over the same period last year. According to ShopperTrak, foot-traffic suffered year-over-year decreases in all but two weeks from Nov. 5 through Jan. 7. Gas prices rose 13% over the average fuel prices in the 2010 holiday season, which may account for some foot-traffic loss.

“Our shopper-counts from 25,000 locations in the United States indicate shoppers were more targeted in their holiday shopping than in years past,” added Martin. “Many pre-shopped for gifts online and then went to stores with in-stock merchandise priced at the best values to make purchases.”

The only week with a year-over-year gain in shopper traffic during the holiday season was the week ending December 24, as late-season shoppers procrastinated or sought out last-minute deals.

ShopperTrak said it expects the downward trend in foot traffic to continue in 2012. Converting fewer numbers of shoppers to buyers has never been more important for retailers, said ShopperTrak.

Among the retail categories, Apparel and Accessories sales increased 6.2% while its foot traffic declined 1.1% this holiday season compared to 2010. The Electronics and Appliance sector’s sales increased 1.4% over last year, and foot traffic dipped 0.8%.

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OPERATIONS

Family Dollar implements Kronos workforce management solution

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York City — Kronos Inc. said Monday that Family Dollar is using its suite of workforce management solutions to control labor costs, minimize compliance risk, and improve productivity of more than 55,000 Family Dollar employees across 7,000 stores.

According to Kronos, Family Dollar’s objective was to address a variety of internal and external issues including rising labor costs; the upcoming healthcare coverage changes mandated by the healthcare reform; and accelerating performance expectations. Family Dollar chose the integrated time and attendance and forecasting and scheduling solutions from Kronos to address those challenges.

Additionally, Kronos helps Family Dollar maintain compliance with federal, state, and other labor laws and regulations.

“Workforce management is at the core of our long-term success,” said Michael Newman, divisional VP store operations, Family Dollar.

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M.Pamsungdfud says:
Mar-28-2012 03:46 am

Additionally, Kronos helps
Additionally, Kronos helps Family Dollar maintain compliance with federal, state, and other labor laws and regulations. For example, the state of California requires employers to comply with complex meal and break rules and Kronos enables the retailer to do so through accommodation of multiple pay rules and complete automation of processes. Through real-time visibility into labor information, Kronos also makes it easier for Family Dollar to have a fair and equitable scheduling process.

M.Pamsungdfud says:
Mar-28-2012 03:46 am

Additionally, Kronos helps Family Dollar maintain compliance with federal, state, and other labor laws and regulations. For example, the state of California requires employers to comply with complex meal and break rules and Kronos enables the retailer to do so through accommodation of multiple pay rules and complete automation of processes. Through real-time visibility into labor information, Kronos also makes it easier for Family Dollar to have a fair and equitable scheduling process.

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OPERATIONS

Urban Outfitters selects QuantiSense for advanced retail analytics solution

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Atlanta — Retail analytics solution provider QuantiSense said Monday that Urban Outfitters has licensed its full suite of solutions including QuantiSense Merchandising, Direct and Store Ops.

Urban selected the QuantiSense Decision Orchestration Platform, which combines business intelligence, data warehousing and sophisticated retail analytics into role-based, actionable and repeatable processes.

“In today’s fast-paced and competitive market, access to timely and accurate information is critical,” said Calvin Hollinger, chief information and logistics officer, Urban Outfitters. “QuantiSense will be at the core of our next generation BI systems, providing a shared platform across all our brands and channels that will enable us to make more informed decisions.”

QuantiSense said it provides executive dashboards and personalized Retail Scorebooks designed to deliver intuitive business graphics that empower users to quickly identify trends, and exception reports to highlight problems and opportunities, as early as possible. Then Retail Playbook ensures consistent use of best practices for team members ranging from merchandising executives, buyers, allocators and planners to store operations, said QuantiSense.

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