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Holiday Retail Predictions: More Apparel, Healthy Gains and Fewer Consumer Discounts
With the holidays quickly approaching, the holiday shopping calendar could be seriously impacted by shipping delays, the national labor shortage and ongoing kinks in the supply chain.
Ray Wimer is an assistant professor of retail practice at Syracuse University’s Martin J. Whitman School of Management. He provides his expectations below and is available for interviews.
Prof. Wimer says:
“Retailers should see healthy gains in holiday revenue this year, as the missing category last year, apparel, makes a comeback. Consumers were more hesitant last year on buying apparel items as they did not know when they could be worn out or show their individual style. A prime example of this is the increased purchasing of jeans (over last year’s sweatpants) this spring and summer which will continue into the fall and holiday season.
“I would recommend that consumers shop early this year as a shortage of workers is impacting the supply chain in everything from truck drivers to port workers to retailers. This is slowing down the timeline of how quickly items are going from overseas factories to hitting the retailer’s inventory. Estimates are running from 30 to 60 days longer. This means you would want to buy the items now instead of waiting and missing out. This also means waiting for an item to go on sale is a riskier strategy as demand is high and consumers are willing to spend at non-sale prices. Retailer sales and discounts will not be at quite the same level as last year.
“Also, if you wait to shop until December, you may want to give the gift of gift cards as there won’t be as many options available to purchase.”
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