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It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas. . . Retailers Say Mobile is In, Social Media is Out



It’s August! That means it’s time to start thinking about that most wonderful time of the year. The holiday season is a time of giving, of peace, of ledgers in the black for the first time in nine months – so very exciting.

Baynote sent its minions out into the world to find out how retailers feel about the upcoming holiday buying season and here’s what they found out.

We start with the Holiday 2012 benchmark.

baynote holiday benchmark

$579.8 billion in sales with a huge rush in the two days leading up to Christmas.

38% of Baynote’s survey respondents said they expected to see an 11-20 percent increase in sales over last year. 22% were expecting to top a 21 percent increase.

Most retailers thought that online and mobile would be huge factors again this year, with online stealing the market share from brick and mortar stores. 53% said they thought mobile transactions would account for a significant part of their holiday revenue. 37% thought mobile would help drive in-store traffic and thus lead to increased revenue.

But get this. 84% of respondents said that social media would have little or no impact on sales.

Social media isn’t the darling it used to be. We’re only a few years in and already retailers are dismissing its power. Very interesting.

Timing and Promotions

Retailers said they planned to use flash sales, buy-one-get-one free offers and the all important free shipping option to help bolster sales from now through the end of the year. But most expect the big push to come closer to Thanksgiving, so they’re planning their biggest promotions for November.

The Online Experience

  • Forty-six percent of retailers continue to make significant investments in SEO and SEM technology.
  • Nearly all retailers are investing in enhanced home, category and landing pages while 77 percent invest in enhanced site search capabilities.
  • Eighty-one percent of retailers have dedicated resources to upgrade eCommerce platforms in anticipation of the season.

It looks to be a good year, but Baynote wants everyone to understand that Christmas isn’t the only holiday for shoppers. They’ve put together an infographic that recaps the holidays of 2012. Here’s a snippet. You can see the full infographic here.

labor day

What are you predicting for Holiday 2013? A blockbuster year? A slight increase? Or business as usual?

  • James Cage

    Interesting article. Mobile platforms are a good way to
    attract consumers and their brands. Came across this interesting piece on
    emerging trends in retail that readers may find useful http://mcgladrey.com/Consumer-Products/Thinking-about-tomorrow-Post-recession-strategies-for-retailers

  • Jacqui

    Just FYI- beginning is spelled wrong!

    • FrankReed

      Thank you. One of those “That looks odd but ……” deals. We appreciate you pointing it out.

  • http://www.twitter.com/Fancy_Lad Fancy_Lad

    Hmmm… Very interesting to see 84% report that social isn’t a factor – because one would think online sales would include social media activity. You can’t really sell things on social – there’s no “click to purchase” button on Twitter. But you can bet your bottom dollar (retailers, I’m talking to you) that social media drives online purchase – and likely mobile as well. I’m also pretty dang sure that as much as retailers besmirch social, they’re going to be using it unabashedly to promote all those sales gimmicks they’re planning in advance of Black Friday, Cyber Monday, etc.

  • mahmoud

    thanks for that … great post

    http://el-coach.blogspot.com/