Retailers have done a good job of getting shoppers into the stores — now they just have to sell them something. According to the National Retail Federation, more than 141 million Americans went shopping over the weekend but they “only” spent $407 on average, compared to $423.55 during Thanksgiving weekend in 2012. The resulting revenues of $57.4b were down 2.9% from last year.
As Breakout co-host Matt Nesto and I discuss in the attached video, the headlines make things sound worse than they are. The NRF is sticking with its rosy forecast of $602 billion in total retail, a 3.9% increase over 2012 and well ahead of the 3.5% average annual growth rate.
The reason for the optimism, despite seemingly weak numbers, is the ongoing migration to the online world. According to ShopperTrak, physical retailers saw little overall change in total spending between Thanksgiving and Black Friday but online sales rose 20%.
The fact that more people are shopping online is less surprising than the