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Show Pet Retail Customers the Holiday Deals Early

When pet owners hunt for their pets’ presents earlier than ever this holiday season—possibly four to six weeks earlier if the prices are right—will pet retailers be ready with the deals and the gifts they want?


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Before you know it, the holiday season will be upon us; actually, you’ve already probably noticed decorations springing up in some of your frequented retail spaces.

Retail depends on holiday revenue in a big way, and the pet industry is no different. Thankfully, 2016 is projected to be better than 2015 across all retail channels, according to pet industry expert John Gibbons.

The Great Recession changed consumer behavior, and the deal is now the driver, said Gibbons, who expects that pet owners will be out to look for their pets’ Christmas presents earlier than ever—probably four to six weeks earlier—if the prices and deals are right.

The question is whether pet retailers be ready for those early shoppers this holiday season.

Gibbons’ research found these specifics:

* The National Retail Federation (NRF) expects sales in November and December, excluding autos, gas and restaurant sales, to increase 3.6 percent to $655.8 billion—significantly higher than the 10-year average of 2.5 percent and above the seven-year average of 3.4 percent since 2009. 

* NRF is forecasting nonstore sales to increase between 7 and 10 percent to as much as $117 billion.

* From Chain Store Age, RetailNext is predicting a 3.2 percent overall increase over 2015, with a 14.9 percent increase through digital channels.

* Sales variability is expected in early November due to the election; however, it will subside by Thanksgiving.

* The Census Bureau Retail Trade Report shows that Nov.-Dec. retail sales, less restaurants, auto and gas stations, increased 3.23 percent in 2015 over 2014 and that 45 percent of the total Nov.-Dec. sales were in November.

* According to a major study from RetailMeNot, "Unwrapping Holiday Insights," 46 percent of consumers will start their holiday shopping before Nov. 1, 60 percent plan to shop sales and promotions up from 51 percent in 2015, 73 percent of consumers will shop in brick-and-mortar stores, 50 percent said the deals they find will help determine what days they shop, and 26 percent said they would travel more than an hour to visit a store with a great deal. 

 

Ellyce Rothrock is content director for Pet Product News.

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