Informed Insight

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Informed Insight

Last Updated:  Dec 14th, 2014

  • Back to School Shopping: The back-to-school season is expected to top $74.9 billion retail sales during 2014.
    • The average family with children in grades K–12 is estimated to spend $669.28 on apparel, shoes, supplies, and electronics during 2014—a 5% increase from 2013.
    • While 85% of back-to-school shoppers return to the same stores yearly. 91% of these shoppers, however, would shop elsewhere if offered a promotion or reward. - Despite this only 3 in 10 business owners ran loyalty programs during 2013, a trend expected to continue in 2014.
  • Winter Holiday Season:Back-to-school season leaves retailers with brief turn-around time to prepare for the winter holiday season. From Black Friday to Christmas, the 2014 holidays shopping season has 26 days—5 days less than 2012.
    • Increasing Importance of eCommerce: Retailer websites’ expanding e-commerce, mobile, and omni-channel capabilities directly impact their winter holiday season’s success. In 2011, consumers spent an average of $121.38 online in November and $108.39 online in December. In 2013, these figures jumped to $132.71 and $122.46, while time spent onsite fell by a full second between 2011 and 2013.
    • Growth of Mobile: In March 2014 mobile site traffic grew to 38.2% more than twice the March 2012 percentage. Mobile devices are now estimated to account for 20% of site sales and 43%+ of site traffic in November 2014.
  • There are more than 23 million small businesses in America, accounting for 54% of all U.S. sales.
  • Since the 1970s, small businesses represent:
    • 55% of all jobs
    • 66% of all net new jobs
  • The top 5 cities for small businesses* are:
    • San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA
    • Detroit-Dearborn, MI
    • Denver, CO
    • Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA
    • San Francisco-Oakland, CA
    • *By annual revenue, credit score, age of business (in months), cash flow, debt-to-income ratio, incorporation (C-Corp or LLC vs. sole proprietorship), and business owners’ personal credit scores.
  • Small and medium businesses would be extremely well served to focus on improving their local search listings.
    • 96% of PC owners and 80% of mobile and tablet owners have used their devices for local searches.
    • 20% of respondents said that the reason for their search was find a business with the product or service desired.
    • 80% of local searches on mobile devices turned into purchases. Of these mobile searches:
      • 73% took place in a physical store
      • 16% via phone
      • 11% online
  • According to a recent poll by Harris Interactive, "webrooming" outpaces showrooming - 69% of respondents had said they first researched an item online before going to a store to by the product compared to 46% who had seen a product ina retail store and chosen to purchase it online.

  • The number 1 reason for reverse showrooming or webrooming according to a survey by Accenture is avoiding shipping costs, with the ability to see and touch the item first a close second. 42% of or "webroomers" use the web to determine whether the item they wish to purchase is in stock. 

  • 69% of individuals that use their smartphone to find a better price online while shopping, will in fact wait until returning home to use their PC to actual make the purchase.

  • Online sales are expected to increase 11.5% to $290 billion during 2014, and web-influenced offline sales are expected to grow by 9.5% reaching $1.4 trillion. According to the same report by Forrester, the number of offline sales that are not influenced byonline activity will drop 2%, down to $1.54 trillion.

  • E-commerce was the biggest winner of the 2013 holiday season. While both online and offline sales combined were 4.1% higher than last year, e-commerce sales alone grew by 12%.

  • Debit card use increasing dramatically: Not only has the number of their debit cards in the US increased from 113 million to 158 million, the overall yearly spend per debit card has grown from $2380 per year to $3107.

  • More importantly not only is traffic increasing from mobile devices but so are sales, 16.6% of online sales were made through mobile devices this past holiday season, up 46% compared to the 2012 holiday season.

  • In the fourth quarter 2013, smartphones and tablets accounted for almost 35% of online traffic, an increase of 40% compared to Q4 2012.

  • Online shopping continued to build growing 17% compared to last year between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, with nearly $2 billion spent on ecommerce.

  • 41% of adults and 76% of smartphone owners plan to use their smartphones for holiday browsing; that means a 17% increase in overall smartphone shopping from last year.

  • A recent report from Kronos, details the impact of omni-channel awareness being a focus point for merchants this holiday season, with more than 66% of respondants noting that a poor shopping experience within a single channel negatively impacts their perception of the brand across all channels.

  • According to the North American Restaurant Consumer Sentiment Review consumers are expected to dine out less often in 2014, though reduced budget trails behind healthy eating as one of the main drivers of this trend. The survey found that 64 percent of respondents ranked the availability of healthful menu options as important or somewhat important in choosing where to dine.
  • With expected car sales up nearly 5% compared to 2013, Kiplinger projects retail sales to accelerate steadily in 2014, with a gain in the 5.2% to 5.7% range, a .7 to .12 point jump over the 4.5% of 2013.


2014 and Beyond