Friday, November 02, 2007

Get the Stats, Jack (or Jill)

Chris Cage has been involved in media, radio and research since, well before I had my first drivers license. His company Indiana Research does work locally, regionally and elsewhere, and he has links on his website where you can go to do some of your own research.

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Thursday, November 01, 2007

Christmas Shopping Stats and Predictions

I got the following research in my pile of email today. How does your family stack up?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Conservative Shopping Expected For The Holidays

According to NRF's 2007 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, conducted by BIGresearch, shoppers still plan to spend more on the holidays this year than last, but consumers say their spending will be a bit restrained this holiday season. The NRF forecast for the upcoming 2007 holiday season, predicts that sales will rise 4.0 percent this year to $474.5 billion.

U.S. consumers plan to spend an average of $816.69 on holiday-related shopping. In addition, these shoppers will spend an additional $106.67 on special "non-gift" purchases by taking advantage of special promotions and discounts to treat themselves.

This brings total planned holiday-related spending to $923.36, an increase of 3.7 percent from 2006 and in line with NRF's economic forecast of 4.0 percent. The 2007 holiday sales increase, says the NRF, is expected to fall below the ten-year average of 4.8 percent, which would represent the slowest holiday sales growth since 2002, when sales rose only 1.3 percent.

NRF President and CEO, Tracy Mullin, said "Shoppers will be a little more conservative with their spending as they become more aware of the softness in the economy... many retailers will be competing on price, causing this holiday season to be very promotional... a tremendous win for consumers."

While the traditional kickoff to the holiday season is Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving), 40.3 percent of shoppers will begin holiday shopping before Halloween, says the report. In fact, Phil Rist, Vice President of Strategy for BIGresearch, says "... shoppers... are already looking to purchase greeting cards, wrapping paper and a variety of gifts."

Discounters can expect the most shopping traffic as 68.4% of consumers plan to shop there (compared to 70.3% in 2006)

  • Department Stores will also see a lion's share of traffic as 58.2% will choose this format (vs. 61.6 percent last year)
  • Grocery store Christmas shopping traffic to be 44.6% in 2007 vs. 49.3% in 2006
  • Online shoppers expected to be 44.3% of shoppers in 2007 vs. 47.1% in 2006
  • Consumers, on average, plan to do 30.2% of their shopping online compared to 28.9% in 2006.

As expected, most holiday budgets will be allocated to gifts, with the average person spending

  • $469.14 on family
  • $90.13 on friends
  • $22.79 on co-workers
  • $37.45 on other people like clergy, teachers, and babysitters

The survey also found that most Americans plan to increase spending on

  • Flowers $20.53 vs. $18.98 last year
  • Decorations $49.76 vs. $46.49 last year

And onsumers also plan to spend

  • $94.69 on candy and food
  • $32.21 on greeting cards and postage

Practical items are the most sought-after gifts on the consumer wish lists this holiday season, which include:

  • 53.8% of consumers want to receive a gift card or gift certificate as a holiday gift
  • 50.1% want clothing and accessories
  • 50.8% wish for books, CDs, DVDs, videos and video games
  • Consumer electronics or computer-related accessories (36.4%)
  • Jewelry (23.8%)
  • Home décor or home-related furnishings (22.0%)

Major factors driving consumer traffic this holiday season, says the report, are:

  • Everyday low prices (12.8%)
  • Sales or price discounts (38.2%)
  • Customer service (4.9%)
  • Product quality (12.8%)
  • Merchandise selection (22.6%)
  • Convenient location (6.3%)

For additional information, visit BIGresearch here, or the National Retail Federation here.

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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Future of Retailing? Visit an Apple Store.

The following is an excerpt from a news letter from a guy known as TAZ (Jim Taszarek). He is a sales consultant specializing in broadcasting. I wanted to include this, because normally only radio or TV insiders get to read his stuff, and this is something EVERYONE should read:

From Doug Harris. Doug went to buy an iPod in a Houston Apple store. His impressions:

+ The place was buzzing with activity; he called it a Beehive of activity.

+ Everybody (salespeople and customers) are doing things together - mostly demonstrations.

+ Everybody knows exactly what's in stock; none of this, "let's see, let me get the guy who handles that stuff."

+ Within 30-seconds Miss Big Smile steps up and asks what product he's interested in, then asks how he plans on using it - then based on his answers offers a less expensive alternative.

+ He also notes everyone leaving the store does so with one of those pure white or black boxes - and a big smile.

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Monday, October 29, 2007

Get real (Seth Godin part 1)

Seth Godin's name keeps popping up. It was maybe 18 months ago the first time I heard his name in an email newsletter from someone. A few months ago, I listened to a podcast he did on the evolution of broadcasting. A few weeks ago, my wife and I were perusing a bookstore/coffee shop on a Saturday night and I read about 1/2 of one of his books. 10 days ago I went to the library to read the rest of the book, and while it wasn't available, I checked out another of Seth's books.

Well, over the weekend I stumbled across the website, and found the following video. Either now, or sometime in the very near future when you have 18 minutes, come back here and watch the video:

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