Consumer purchases in the U.S. during the holiday months of November and December can account for 20-40 percent of retailers’ annual sales. With the economy and unemployment improving, many expect Americans will be in a better mood to open their wallets. CCTV America’s Roza Kazan reported this story from Chicago.
Robust sales expected for start of US holiday buying seasonConsumer purchases in the U.S. during the holiday months of November and December can account for 20-40 percent of retailers' annual sales. With the economy and unemployment improving, many expect Americans will be in a better mood to open their wallets. CCTV America's Roza Kazan reported this story from Chicago.
While consumers are awaiting good deals, U.S. retailers are looking forward to good sales. The National Retail Federation expects sales to increase 4.1 percent in November and December over last year, a rise not seen since 2011.
“This is the first season where we haven’t had some kind of costs pressure, be it food prices, gas prices are actually down for a change, different housing prices are actually flattening out… so there are a lot of things for once working in the consumer favor,” said Paul Swinand, a retail analyst for Morningstar, an investment research firm.
Retail experts say consumers will spend nearly $617 billion this year and most of it will be spent in stores, despite continued growth in online sales.
A recent survey by Deloitte found that consumers will spend the majority of their holiday budgets in stores, but marketing experts have said retailers should also beware of online competition and the mobile shopper.
“One of the things that happen with much greater frequency now that people have mobile devices and wifi-enabled devices in stores is that they might be show-rooming,” said Katy Atty, marketing manager for mobile retail consultant Iris Mobile. “So they might be looking at a TV and they might be looking on Amazon to see if they can beat the prices.”
Social media is also expected to play a big role. That Deloitte survey found sites like Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter will influence 50 cents on every dollar spent in stores.
Ari Zoldan of Quantum Networks discusses role of social media during holiday sales
Social media is becoming far more influential in determining what consumers will spend their holiday shopping dollars on. According to a joint study by Netbase and Edison Research, when it comes to buying clothing for a special occasion, Facebook influences 31 percent of American women in their fashion choices. Fashion blogs have the most impact with 36 percent. Instagram influences 17 percent of women while Twitter influences 11 percent.
For more on the role of social media this holiday shopping season, CCTV America’s Michelle Makori interviewed with Ari Zoldan, chief executive of Quantum Networks.
Ari Zoldan of Quantum Networks discusses role of social media during holiday salesFor more on the role of social media this holiday shopping season, CCTV America’s Michelle Malori talked with Ari Zoldan, the CEO of Quantum Networks.
Christian Kastrop of OECD discusses global economic growth trends
CCTV America’s Rachelle Akuffo also interviewed Christian Kastrop, policy studies director at the OECD, about how some countries are bucking the trend of modest global growth.