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Consumer Trends

In retail, it’s never too early to prepare for the holidays

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It’s June – and you know what that means if you’re in retail: It’s prime time for holiday season planning. With that in mind, the Retail Insight Center has developed a brief guide to review the 2013 season before diving into 2014.

Consumer Spending Holidays 2013


2013 was no easy street for retail – and it didn’t help that many of the status reports and rumors didn’t reflect what was really happening in the industry. We’ve taken a look back at what we heard in the media and elsewhere, and compared it with research data collected during and after the season. The differences might surprise you.

For example, consider the predictions that spending would be down significantly during the holidays due to the government shutdown, harsh winter weather and fewer days between Thanksgiving and Christmas. When consumer spending reports were released after the holidays, we saw that spending was in fact up from the previous year. What’s more surprising is that spending was consistently up throughout the season, and not just in December.

Preparing for 2014

What does that mean for retailers as they begin to prepare for the next holiday season? The report explains that sales continue to be the driving motivators for consumers to spend, and they’re spreading their shopping across a longer period of time. This year, retailers can use this to their advantage by considering extending promotions (and extended store hours) outside of the traditional November-December timeline.

When consumers start shopping

When consumers start holiday shopping

Download the full report for more insights into the season. These statistics (and more) can be found in the Retail Insight Center, where you can see all data from the holidays and map your own analysis … just in time for the season ahead.