Holiday Sales Rise This Year Even With Supply Issues

Increased prices were not an issue for customers this holiday season as holiday sales rose 8.5% this season compared to 2020, according to CNBC. These results were covered between November 1st and December 24th. Not only was it a significant increase from last year but it was the biggest annual increase in 17 years. Experts in the retail industry expect this momentum to continue in the following weeks after the holidays, and some even say into the first half of 2022.

The total sales this holiday season were up 10.7% compared to pre-pandemic levels in 2019. Furthermore, in-store sales grew 2.4% and online sales surged 61.4% verses 2019, according to CNBC. Clothing was the leading category for retail sales at 47%, followed by Jewelry (32%), and electronics (16%).

However, online shopping has dramatically increased, which makes sense as consumers have had more time to shop online versus going in the store – especially when certain restrictions have limited their ability to shop in person. According to CNBC, e-commerce sales rose 11% from last year to this year, with online sales making up 21% of total retail spending.

Many consumers this year were determined to make the holidays possible. Over the past year consumer prices rose 5.7%, which according to AP News, is the fastest pace in 39 years. Consumers were willing to spend more money to get the items they wanted and at the same time were more willing to look for alternative options on the items they wanted, that were out of stock due to product shortages.

Stay tuned for next month as a wider picture from the National Retail Federation will show an analysis of the combined two-month (November and December) results in mid-January, which are based on an analysis from the Commerce Department. If you would like to learn more, contact a team member today!

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