Black Friday Sales Hits Record, Retail traffic and Foot-falls up.

Preliminary reports for Black Friday indicate that retailers may have seen their strongest sales ever during the all-important kick-off to the holiday shopping season.

black friday sales

Retail sales on Black Friday climbed 6.6% this year to an estimated $11.4 billion, according to ShopperTrak, which tracks foot traffic at malls and stores. Last year, sales climbed just 0.3% to $10.7 billion, which was a record one-day sales amount at the time, according to the company.

“This is the largest year-over-year gain in ShopperTrak’s National Retail Sales Estimate for Black Friday since the 8.3 percent increase we saw between 2007 and 2006,” said ShopperTrak founder Bill Martin. “Still, it’s just one day. It remains to be seen whether consumers will sustain this behavior through the holiday shopping season.”

However, sales have been strong throughout the entire month of November with retailers rolling out holiday deals earlier than ever. In the two weeks leading up to the week of Black Friday, retail sales were up 3.6% and 3.8%, respectively, ShopperTrak reported.

“Retailers continue to stretch out Black Friday weekend by enticing shoppers with doorbuster deals weeks in advance,” said Martin.

Online sales have also proven to be strong, with many big-box retailers and department stores offering deals online earlier this year.

Black Friday online sales surge 24%

Online sales were up 39.3% on Thanksgiving Day and 24.3% on Black Friday compared to the same days last year, according to IBM’s (IBM,Fortune 500) Coremetrics, which tracks real-time data from 500 retailers in the apparel, department store, health and beauty and home goods categories.

“This year marked Thanksgiving’s emergence as the first big spending day of the 2011 holiday season with a record number of consumers shifting their focus from turkey to tablets and the search for the best deals,” said John Squire, chief strategy officer at IBM’s Smarter Commerce division.

Consumers also spent slightly more than they did last year, although they spent most of that money on themselves. According to NPD Group consumers spent about 3% more on purchases during Black Friday. However, about 44% were self purchases up from 33% last year, the research group said.

Retail traffic on Black Friday up 2%

Total US visits to the top 500 Retail websites increased 2% on Black Friday as compared to 2010 and received more than 173 million US visits. Traffic has increased each day leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday and the total visits dipped slightly (-1%) on Black Friday compared Thanksgiving Day 2011. Early Black Friday sales resulted in a shift of online traffic, which climbed prior to the Thanksgiving holiday, however, continued heavy promotional activity helped to drive significant online traffic on both Thanksgiving and Black Friday. While Black Friday has been the top day for online retail traffic over the past two years, warm weather and early store openings encouraged shoppers to go online sooner this season.
DMS Retail 500 11-25-2011.png

Among the categories driving the growth in traffic on Black Friday were Department Stores (e.g. Amazon and Wal-Mart) Apparel & Accessories, Appliances & Electronics (e.g. Best Buy) and Video & Games (e.g. Game Stop).
DMS Retail Categories 11-25-2011.png

Below is a list of the top visited retail sites on Black Friday:
DMS Retail 500 Sites 11-25-2011.png

Many of the major retail websites experienced growth on Black Friday, including Amazon, Best Buy, JC Penney, Sears and Kohl’s. Amazon.com was the most visited website on Black Friday for the 7th year in a row.

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Global Brands Rake in Moolah.

Indian Stores Among Best in generating revenue per square feet per year.

What is M.A.C?” The question, posed by Govind Shrikhande of Shoppers Stop, must have taken the top brass at Estee Lauder Companies by surprise. 

To the top managers of the New York cosmetics group, the question may even have come across as a case of rare ignorance about Make-up Art Cosmetics or M.A.C, especially surprising from the boss of India’s largest department store chain who had been pitching for a partnership with Estee Lauder in India.
But just four years later, two of the 20-odd stores that Estee Lauder runs in partnership with Shoppers Stop in India rank among their top 10 worldwide in terms of revenues.

And Estee Lauder is not alone.
Scores of leading international brands – Swarovski, Accessorize, US Polo, Aldo and Promod, to name a few – are realising that some of their stores in still third world India are among their most successful across the world, helped by a constantly expanding army of consumers with increasing disposable incomes and high brand awareness.

Such is the level of awareness that it has even taken retail industry veterans by surprise. Shrikhande drew a blank then about M. A.C, but consumers in India knew about the Canadian brand that Estee Lauder had acquired in 1994. “Many consumers knew about the brand and were using the products even before it entered the country officially,” he says.

And now M.A.C stores at Select City Walk shopping mall in south Delhi and at Dynamix Mall in Mumbai’s Juhu are generating revenues in excess of $1,000 per square feet per year, executives who did not wish to be named said.
High-end crystal products maker Swarovski’s stores at Bandra in Mumbai and at the T3 terminal at Delhi airport rank among its top stores by sales, says Sukanya Dutta Roy, director of the company’s consumer goods business.

Similarly, British fashion accessories retailer Accessorize’s store at Ambience Mall in Gurgaon is the company’s second biggest revenue earner, clocking sales of about $600 per square ft per year.

Two of apparel brand US Polo stores also rank among the top ten globally. The 1,000 sq ft stores in Delhi and Bangalore generate sales of around $700 per sq ft a year, says J Suresh, managing director of Arvind Lifestyle Brands, which launched US Polo in India barely two years ago. Sales at the company’s other stores across the world usually vary between $200 and $500 sq ft a year.
Women’s fashion brand Promod’s store in Delhi reports the highest sales per sq ft in Asia, while Canadian shoe and accessories brand Aldo has two of its top 50 stores in India.

While some analysts believe that the performance at Indian stores may reflect the declining offtake in the more developed markets, others argue that several brands generate above average sales for short periods because they have a few stores servicing a large catchment.

“The reason could be initial attraction of the brand and fewer points of sale compared to the size of the overall consuming population,” says Ramesh Tainwala, CEO, Planet Retail.

At German sportswear brand Puma, executives do not look at sales figures alone but also factor in the exchange rate fluctuations. “We compare performance of Puma stores on a percentage profitability basis as opposed to sales per square feet,” says Rajeev Mehta, managing director of the company which counts three of its stores among the top ten globally.

Even as some analysts view the strong sales at Indian stores of global brands with caution, Raghav Gupta, principal at management consulting firm Booz & Co, points to the emerging big picture. “It links back to the overall position that India is starting to take in the global economy,” says Gupta.

Global India Stores

M.A.C
Juhu in Mumbai and Select Citywalk in Delhi

Swarovski
Bandra and Delhi Airport Terminal 3

Accessorize
Ambience Mall, Gurgaon

Puma
Bangalore’s Garuda Mall, West Gate Mall in Delhi, and Church Road in Pune

US POLO
Select Citywalk Mall at Saket in Delhi, and The Forum, Bangalore

Promod
Select Citywalk Mall in Delhi

Aldo
Select Citywalk Mall and Palladium

100 Retailers in Shopping Centers Released

China Chain Store & Franchise Association (CCFA) convened the Conference on Cooperation, Development and Exchanges Between Commercial Real Estate Developers and Chain Retailers in Ningbo of China’s eastern Zhejiang Province on June 9 and released the book 100 Retailers in Shopping Centers.

CCFA has selected over 100 outstanding chain retailers from its members in various business formats, which have the ability to make expansion nationwide. The Association categorized them according to existing business formats and functions of shopping centers and offered information on different aspects of these brands, such as features of their image, traffic, expansion rate and development plan.
Some are international brands, some are famous brands in China and some are leading brands in regions, including department stores, supermarkets, home appliance stores and household stores and covering all business formats like apparel, fashion, catering, cosmetics, entertainment, education and service. These can meet the demands of commercial properties to attract investment from various stores and provide a wide variety of retailers for commercial real estate developers.
In addition to the information in it, the book has also given professional analysis and different views from experts of shopping centers on the industry’s current situation, trend, investment, financing, planning and design.
It is a great aid for commercial real estate companies to learn and attract investment of their shopping center programs.
Here are some comments by developers of shopping centers on the book:
It is quite useful! The book can give guidance on brand portfolio and combination of business formats and it is a professional reference for the management of shopping centers.
– Wanda Commercial Management
Shopping centers are drivers for creating a fashionable and prosperous city, while brands are the core competitiveness of shopping centers in the market. Best wishes to 100 Retailers in Shopping Centers.
-Sunshine100 Real Estate Group
The book has integrated resources and set up platform for information exchanges, a show of CCFA’s function and value. 100 retailers is the start and we are aiming at 1000.
-Powerlong Real Estate Holdings Limited
The book is an excellent reference to see clearly the essence and core value of shopping centers.
-Shopping Center Department of CR Vanguard
Reading the book will free you from the worries when you are developing shopping centers.
-COFCO Commercial Property Investment Co., Ltd.

Casual Male to launch superstore concept

Canton, Mass. ( July 8, 2010 ) Casual Male Retail Group said it will open Destination XL (DXL), a new men’s superstore concept catering to the bigger and taller man. The initial DXL stores are planned to launch in Chicago, Houston, Memphis and Las Vegas this summer.

The new format will feature a wide range of clothing, shoes and products under one roof, with collections of good, better and best products merchandised by lifestyle. With a 12,000-sq.-ft. footprint, the stores will carry product assortments in a range of very broad sizes starting at XL in tops and a 42-inch waist in pants for the bigger customer and a 38 inch waist for the taller customer.

The Casual Male superstore concept was created following a six-month consumer research study conducted by L.E.K. Consulting that found that big and tall men are looking for more options in a “one-stop-shop” environment and are willing to travel longer distances for a place that caters to their specific needs.

“DXL is a new and innovative retail concept that is attuned to our customers’ needs,” says David Levin, president and CEO of CMRG. “Our target customer wants choices, value for their dollar and the convenience and unique shopping experience DXL offers. We are confident that our new lifestyle superstore concept will offer the unique shopping experience that many big and tall men have been seeking.”

The DXL superstore concept also will be supported by an all-inclusive e-commerce site, launching in 2011, which will offer the same breadth of apparel and products.

Currently, Casual Male Retail Group operates 454 Casual Male XL retail and outlet stores, as well as 19 Rochester Clothing stores.

Baoxiniao To Open 100 New Specialty Stores In 2009.

Chinese apparel group Baoxiniao has announced plans to open about 100 new specialty stores in 2009.

The company announced the plan during its 2008 annual general meeting and it was revealed that Baoxiniao will invest CNY107.94 million to build its chain marketing network in 2009. Under the company’s principle of prudence in opening new stores, it will limit the growth rate of its business suit specialty stores to about 7%. For fashion brand specialty stores, after the closure of poorly-performing stores, the total number of new stores will be around 100.

Zhou Xinzhong, the chairman of Baoxiniao Group, told local media that in 2009, its headquarters will start to build a modern distribution center and the company will select sites nationwide to open its specialty stores. It will develop at least as many sites in 2009 as it did in 2008.

Founded in 1996, Baoxiniao Group is a group that combines industrial management and capital management, and is involved in designing, producing and selling up market garments and acting as agent for international brands. The company currently operates apparel brands such as Saint Angelo, S. Angelo, and Bono.

Zara Kids unveils first UK store in London’s Covent Garden.

Spanish fashion giant Zara has opened its first standalone Zara Kids shop in the UK as it seeks to grab a larger slice of the £4bn childrenswear market.

The store has opened in London’s Covent Garden, next door to a traditional Zara shop. It was previously an accessories and apparel shop and has its own entrance and fascia.

Childrenswear is a lucrative market for retailers such as Gap, H&M, Next and Marks & Spencer, and is one of the more recession-proof sectors, because parents stop spending money on themselves before their children.

The market has also opened up further following the collapse of Woolworths, which had a large share through its Ladybird brand. Problems at Adams, which fell into administration and closed 147 shops before being rescued by its former owner, have also had a bearing on the market.

Research firm Verdict estimated the clothing sector as a whole will contract by 1.4 per cent this year, but that childrenswear will only fall 0.7 per cent, to be worth £4.6bn.

A Zara spokeswoman would not comment on possible roll-out plans. The retailer has around 200 Zara Kids stores globally, mostly in Spain, and sells childrenswear in many of its larger Zara shops.

Verdict senior retail analyst Maureen Hinton said the UK launch could be a shrewd move. “Zara Kids has been fairly low key – often downstairs in stores and not displayed in windows.” She added it could pose a threat to other mid-market players. “There is the possibility of taking share from Next, M&S and Gap. It is an attractive offer,” she said.

Bernstein senior research analyst Luca Solca said there is room for Zara to build its market share. He said: “The market is still fragmented and Inditex can certainly gain share. On the back of its Zara stores there could be an opportunity to make more of kidswear.” He estimated that Zara’s childrenswear offer generated sales of between €225m and €250m (£202.2m and £224.7m) in the year to January.

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