Same store sales for the 23 retail chains tracked by RetailSails rose 3% in November 2011, marking the 27th straight monthly gain after 12 consecutive months of declines, but the smallest increase since March. Data from the analysis, released in December, indicates that only 16 of the 23 chains reported same-store gains for the month, compared to all 21 in November 2010, when the year-over-year rise was a more impressive 5.6%. RetailSails insight suggests that while shoppers splurged for one weekend, the overall season may not out-perform.
Discount and variety stores posted the largest gains, jumping 5.7% year-over-year. Apparel and accessories stores (2.1%) and drug stores (1.8%) posted more middling growth, while department stores lagged far behind, posting a marginal year-on-year rise of 0.4%.
Meanwhile, according to the Thomson Reuters Same Store Sales Index, same store sales industry-wide registered a 3.1% year-over-year gain for November. The finding is based on figures provided by 20 retailers, two of which have yet to report their monthly sales results. The Thomson index also found discount stores (5.7%) led the way among sectors, though apparel stores gains (1.6%) appear much more robust (4.6%) when removing Gap’s slump from the picture.
According to a BDO USA survey released in November 2011, retail CMOs forecast a modest 2.1% increase in their same store sales (referring to revenues of retail stores open for a year or more) for the holiday season compared to 2010.
Online Holiday Weekend Sales Surge
When examining the start of the holiday shopping period (November 24-28), RetailMeNot found much more impressive performance in the online retail industry: according to [pdf] December analysis, same-store merchant sales, driven by coupon and deal seekers, increased by more than 70% year-over-year during the time period. The report also found that on average, online shoppers spent 5% more per order on Thanksgiving than on Black Friday.
Meanwhile, comScore reports that for the first 32 days of the November-December 2011 holiday season, $18.7 billion was spent online, marking a 15% increase compared to the corresponding days last year. The $6 billion in “Cyber Week” online spending was a new weekly peak, with 3 individual days passing the $1 billion threshold.
About the Data: RetailMeNot’s results were compiled as of December 1, 2011, and included year-over-year view based on a sample size of 1,229 same-store merchants.