And They’re Off …
This past weekend holiday shoppers showed up in full force — both in person and online — and were ready to spend in spite of the 2020 pandemic
An estimated 186.4 million consumers took advantage of the Thanksgiving holiday weekend and shopped in-store and online this year, according to the annual survey released today by the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Prosper Insights & Analytics.
While the overall number of shoppers from Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday dropped slightly from 189.6 million in an unusually robust 2019, it is still significantly higher than the 165.8 million shoppers in 2018.
The majority of holiday shoppers (55 percent) said recent developments around COVID-19 cases had no impact on their holiday spending plans this year. Most (51 percent) also feel that given the pandemic, they are more interested in holiday decorations and seasonal items. They were also eager to support small businesses, as 77 percent indicated they were more interested in doing so this year.
For this holiday season, the NRF has forecast that overall sales will increase between 3.6 percent and 5.2 percent over 2019 to a total between $755.3 billion and $766.7 billion.
It will be interesting to see what the final numbers are at the end of the month. Stay tuned!
Have You Registered Yet?
Don’t forget, later today we will be offering a free webinar on “Outlook 2021: What to Expect from the Economy, the Consumer and Our Legislators.”
At 2 p.m. EST, Charlie Hall, Craig Regelbrugge and Bridget Behe will take a look into their crystal ball and provide you with insight into the economy, the political landscape and the mind of the consumer in 2021.
In an effort to spread holiday joy to those who need it most, Lowe’s has announced it will donate and deliver $1 million worth of pre-lit Christmas trees to families and organizations impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the next two weeks, Lowe’s will partner with the NFL and nonprofits nationwide to deliver more than 13,000 Christmas trees to homes and facilities in need of extra cheer, from childcare and youth centers to first responder stations and more. “At a time when holiday moments at home are more important than ever, we wanted to spread a little joy to those who have been impacted most by the pandemic this year,” said Marisa Thalberg, Lowe’s executive vice president, chief brand and marketing officer.
This holiday season Sam’s Club is bringing the North Pole into the homes of its members. Because the pandemic has made it more difficult for in-store shopping, Sam’s Club is offering members a free visit at www.mysantasession.com. “We knew going into the holiday season that opportunities to connect with Santa were going to be limited,” said Megan Crozier, chief merchant at Sam’s Club. “So, we decided to offer our members something special, and what better way than helping your children get one-on-one time with Santa?” Members will be able to personalize their session by choosing from a diverse group of Santas, and before the visit, parents can give him some fun facts about their kids so he can make their virtual visit a little more magical.
This week Meijer announced that, with the help of its customers, the Meijer Simply Give program is on track to provide more than 80 million meals this year. For Giving Tuesday, the retailer offered customers the opportunity to turn their $10 Simply Give donation card purchase into $30 for a local food pantry. “Our customers and team members play a vital role in helping us serve our communities through Simply Give and we are pleased to help them stretch their giving further,” said Rick Keyes, Meijer president and CEO. Customers can help stock the shelves of a food pantry in their community by purchasing a $10 Simply Give donation card upon checkout at their local Meijer now through Jan. 2.