In-store traffic expected to slow up to 25% this holiday season

Oct. 6 (UPI) — In-store traffic for the six weeks of the 2020 holiday season is expected to be down between 22% and 25% from last year, retail research provider ShopperTrack announced Tuesday.

Johnson Controls’ Sensormatic Solutions released the annual ShopperTrack list of predicted busiest shopping days in the United States.

The day after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday, Nov. 27, is predicted to be the busiest shopping day, followed by the Saturday before Christmas, Super Saturday, Dec. 19, and the day after Christmas, Dec. 26.

“While COVID-19 is reshaping the way U.S. consumers are currently shopping and will shop for the 2020 holiday season, retailers should remain optimistic,” Sensormatic Solutions President Bjoern Peterson said in the statement. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve noticed a shift toward weekday shopping as consumers take advantage of the new remote work reality while also consciously avoiding the historically large weekend crowds. We expect this trend to continue into the holiday season. U.S. consumers continue to be more purposeful in their shopping journeys, so retailers need to make sure they capitalize on every in-store visit.”

The 10 busiest shopping days will account for 34.2% of holiday traffic this year compared with 46.5% last year, the forecast predicts.

“Black Friday in the past was so big, it was typically double the traffic of Super Saturday,” said Brian Field, ShopperTrak’s senior director of retail consulting practice. “It’s not going to be that way this year.”

Retailers have stocked shelves with holiday items before Halloween to avoid last-minute crowding. Companies have also spread out sales events to give shoppers more time to buy gifts.

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