Holiday crowds at the mall will be smaller this year
ShopperTrak predicts as much as 25% drop in shoppers
Black Friday might be losing its clout. But it is still expected to be the busiest day in stores during the 2020 holiday shopping season, according to a new report.
With the coronavirus pandemic prompting consumers to buy more online and avoid crowded spaces, though, people likely won’t be showing up in droves for doorbuster deals the day after Thanksgiving.
Traffic in retail stores is expected to be down 22% to 25% year over year during the six key weeks of the holiday season, a ShopperTrak forecast released Tuesday said. “Black Friday in the past was so big, it was typically double the traffic of Super Saturday,” said Brian Field, a senior director of the retail consulting practice at ShopperTrak, which is part of Sensormatic Solutions. “It’s not going to be that way this year.”
Super Saturday, or the Saturday before Christmas, is when last-minute shoppers typically rush to stores, packing parking lots, to finish their gift lists. This year, it will be Dec. 19.
Hoping to elongate the season and avoid any last-minute shipping chaos in the final days leading up to Christmas, retailers are now stocking their shelves with holiday goodies even before Halloween. Companies are also spreading out sales events, and starting them in October, to give shoppers plenty of time to buy gifts. Notably, Amazon will hold its Prime Day sales event on Oct. 13-14, prompting rivals such as Target, Home Depot and Best Buy to hold rival deal days. And this could draw holiday dollars further forward.
If and when Americans head to the stores this holiday season, they’ll likely find extended hours and pop-up locations to help control crowds and keep shopping in person safe. The predicted 10 busiest days, listed below, are expected to account for just 34.2% of all holiday traffic, compared with 46.5% a year ago, ShopperTrak said. “All of these days are going to take hits,” Field said.
These are predicted to be the top 10 busiest days of the season, per ShopperTrak:
While it’s still slated to be the busiest day of the season, Black Friday has been losing steam in recent years. Sales have been spreading through the entire weekend after Thanksgiving and into Cyber Monday. In 2019, Black Friday traffic at retail stores dropped 6.2%, after rising on 2.3% Thanksgiving Day, according to ShopperTrak data. This year, many retailers said their stores will be closed on Thanksgiving.
Geschrieben von Lauren Thomas
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