Consumer and Retailer Trends Support a Robust Outlook for the Holiday Shopping Season
Washington, DC, November 10, 2021 – Madison Marquette, a leading private full-service real estate provider, investment manager, developer and operator, today released its inaugural 2021 Holiday Trends Report: Opportunities & Headwinds, which anticipates record-setting consumer spending, a return to in-store shopping, and retailers scrambling to meet demand.
Madison Marquette’s report combines a range of 2021 forecasts and its own trends analysis to provide an inclusive outlook for the upcoming holiday season. The report highlighted that sales growth of 13% could exceed 1999 levels and how retailers are blurring the lines between digital and in-store shopping to maximize sales.
“Consumer spending momentum and their thirst to celebrate after last year’s lockdowns and missed milestones are driving a bullish retail sales outlook,” said Meghann Martindale, Madison Marquette’s Head of Retail Research.
Martindale also warned of wildcards that could cloud the holiday season outlook. “While retailers’ investments to overcome supply chain threats are likely to increase product prices and could impact overall sales, the 2021 holiday season will be remembered as a return to in-store shopping enhanced by digital discovery and purchasing,” Martindale said.
View the Full Report. Key trends identified in Madison Marquette’s analysis include:
Robust Retail Sales Outlook
According to a variety of forecasts, holiday retail sales are expected to grow 7% to 13%, the latter of which would make this holiday season the strongest since 1999. Consumer spending is expected to shift from last year’s homebody lifestyle purchases of athleisure wear, kitchen, home accessories, and electronics to more discretionary and impulse purchases on apparel, jewelry, handbags, accessories, and luxury items.
Supply Chain Threats to Sales Growth
High consumer demand is fueling an optimistic outlook for the holiday season, but several wildcards threaten retail sales, including persistent supply chain challenges, lack of products, and delivery delays. Challenges have forced retailers to enhance stopgap manufacturing, inventory, and distribution measures to meet consumer demand. However, retailers are hitting sales targets by drastically increasing spending on suppliers, logistics, freight, and labor costs. Retailers are trying to absorb most of the burden, but consumers should expect upward pressure on prices. Product shortages include chips for electronics toys, cotton for apparel, food and household staples, even Christmas trees, and décor. Gift cards and spending on experiences could grow more than expected with limited product availability.
Shopping Early & In-store
Consumers are shopping early to buy products amid uncertain supplies while returning to the in-store experience after an accelerated digital migration during the pandemic. According to Placer.ai, foot traffic at the top 100 U.S. malls and at most of Madison Marquette’s properties were back to 2019 levels by August. Consumers must prepare to pay higher prices, have multiple alternate gift ideas, and anticipate longer delivery windows. To retain customers, retailers will need to prepare their employees to help frustrated customers find what they want. Already, retailers are warning consumers early about the lack of product, earlier ship dates and suggesting substitutions for original gift ideas if they are sold out or unable to fulfill in time.
Digital Discovery: The Hybrid Reality
Digital discovery is key to captivating consumers on the path to purchase across all channels. The in-store experience is now more digitally engaging, while online and mobile shopping has evolved into a more immersive experience that mimics the physical store as much as possible. For the first time, Target kicked off Deal Days in October with offerings online, through the Target App, and at all Target stores, allowing shoppers to save across all channels. Social commerce is also one of the fastest-growing segments of retail. Consumers also are embracing live-streamed fashion shows, using artificial and virtual reality apps to try on cosmetics, apparel and accessories, and using personalized digital stylists for gifting this year.
About Madison Marquette
Madison Marquette is a leading private full-service real estate provider, investment manager, developer and operator headquartered in Washington, D.C. The company delivers integrated investment, development, leasing and management services to a diverse portfolio of 330 assets in 20 states and manages an investment portfolio valued at over $6.2 billion. The company partners with global, institutional and private investors to provide industry-leading investment and advisory services across asset classes — including mixed-use, retail, office, medical, industrial, senior living and multi-family. Following its 2019 merger with the Boston-based Roseview Group, Madison Marquette added capital markets, investment banking and corporate advisory services to its integrated capabilities. Founded in 1992, the company built its reputation on the successful development, repositioning and redevelopment of landmark mixed-use assets, and now leverages that performance legacy to provide clients with exceptional asset services and investment advice. Madison Marquette has a strategic bench of professionals providing nationwide service from 14 regional markets and is a member of the Capital Guidance group of companies.
Media Contact: Peter Bartelme, [email protected], 415-664-1503