Retail suffers double-digit traffic and sales declines in November

U.S. store sales fell 11 percent and traffic was down 11.4 percent in November, according to RetailNext.

"Many retailers and analysts have suggested the double-digit decreases in store traffic and sales over Black Friday and the Thanksgiving weekend were due to 'holiday creep' and the start of holiday promotions earlier in the month," said Chitra Balasubramanian, head of business analytics at RetailNext. "Store sales were down over the month, and it was more pronounced over the Thanksgiving weekend. However, the data from the monthly Pulse report indicates a more complex retail environment, as performance varied significantly by retailer type and region, and online shopping undeniably made a considerable impact on results."

Holiday in-store traffic has shifted this year due to what some analysts are calling the "Thanksgiving effect," or retailers opening stores earlier than usual on Thanksgiving Day. According to data from shopkick, in-store traffic increased 12 percent on Thanksgiving Day over the same day in 2013.

In fact, according to the National Retail Federation's Thanksgiving Weekend Spending survey, traffic over the four days dropped 5.2 percent from 2013, and the total number of same shopper trips was also down to 233.3 million shoppers from 248.6 million last year.

One of the reasons for the decline in traffic is the increase in online and mobile sales this holiday season.

U.S. shoppers spent more than $2 billion dollars on e-commerce this Cyber Monday, up 17 percent from last year. The occasion marked the heaviest online spending day in U.S. history and the first time ever to surpass $2 billion in sales.

However, those shoppers who are still visiting physical stores this holiday season are spending more money per visit. Therefore, retail's big winners, according to Shelley Kohan, RetailNext's VP of retail consulting, are those brands delivering a consistent and relevant experience across both digital and physical stores.

For more:
-See this RetailNext press release

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