In-store traffic declined nationally in February due to harsh weather conditions, and sales were negatively impacted by a muted promotional environment. According to Euclid's monthly benchmark report, sales declined 2.3 percent in categories including general merchandise, apparel, furniture and other.
Clothing sales fell 3.6 percent from February of 2014, and general merchandise dropped 1.1 percent.
Even though the average duration of a shopping trip increased 15 percent year-over-year, the time spent lingering in the store did not translate to improved sales.
Even Valentine's Day was hit by the weather. However, the holiday did drive a spike in return visits, and according to IBISWorld, holiday spending was up about 3.8 percent from 2014.
The best shopping day of the month was Sunday, Feb. 1, when traffic, storefront conversions and average shopping durations were higher than in 2014. The day benefitted from Super Bowl weekend activity and some early shopping for Valentine's Day. The worst shopping day of the month was Tuesday, Feb. 17, which dragged in a post-Valentine's Day and President's Day weekend lull.
February storms did help to boost digital shopping. According to IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark data, "climate commerce" in the Northeast increased 20 percent during the two storms on Feb. 2 and 9.
-See this Euclid report
February sales decline 10% amid winter weather
Valentine's Day spending up 4%
Valentine's Day highlights the new cycle of seasonal shopping
Winter storms boost mobile commerce
Store traffic, sales down 8% in January