Traffic, Sales Down for Pre-Christmas Weekend

Foot traffic in U.S. malls and shopping centers for the last weekend before Christmas (12/19 – 12/21) fell 23.7 percent as compared to the same weekend in 2007,  according to ShopperTrak’s retail traffic index.

Meanwhile, the Chicago-based company’s retail sales estimate reported a 5.3 percent sales decrease for the same period.

ShopperTrak placed much of the blame on the poor performance on inclement weather throughout most of the country, poor economic conditions, and the fact that the final Saturday before Christmas (known as “Super Saturday” by some retail professionals) was further away from Christmas day than it was in 2007.

Super Saturday weekend 2007 total U.S. foot traffic increased 7 percent versus the same three-day period in 2006.

On Super Saturday 2008, foot traffic fell 17 percent, year-over-year.

Looking at retail sales, ShopperTrak’s NRSE reported Super Saturday weekend retail sales declined a sharp 5.3 percent ($21.7 billion), despite Saturday’s slight 0.5 percent ($8.75 billion) increase, compared to last year. Retail sales for Super Saturday weekend 2007 increased 11.5 percent ($22.9 billion) versus the same weekend in 2006.

“Unfortunately, retailers didn’t get much help from mother nature this past weekend which seemed to have curbed shopping trips and slowed sales levels during this critical three-day period,” said Bill Martin, co-founder of ShopperTrak.  “On the bright side, our numbers next week should indicate that the 2008 calendar shift—which allows five less shopping days this season—will provide retailers with better sales and traffic numbers as procrastinating shoppers spend on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday leading into Christmas.”

ShopperTrak also reports that year-over-year sales for the week ending Dec. 20 fell 6.5 percent, while sales versus the previous week ending Dec. 13 increased 22.5 percent. Total U.S. foot traffic for the same period versus the 2007 comparison week ending Dec.r 22, fell 24 percent.

Foot traffic in U.S. malls and shopping centers for the last weekend before Christmas (12/19 – 12/21) fell 23.7 percent as compared to the same weekend in 2007, ShopperTrak’s retail traffic index.

Meanwhile, the Chicago-based company’s retail sales estimate reported a 5.3 percent sales decrease for the same period.

ShopperTrak placed much of the blame on the poor performance on inclement weather throughout most of the country, poor economic conditions, and the fact that the final Saturday before Christmas (known as “Super Saturday” by some retail professionals) was further away from Christmas day than it was in 2007.

Super Saturday weekend 2007 total U.S. foot traffic increased 7 percent versus the same three-day period in 2006.

On Super Saturday 2008, foot traffic fell 17 percent, year-over-year.

Looking at retail sales, ShopperTrak’s NRSE reported Super Saturday weekend retail sales declined a sharp 5.3 percent ($21.7 billion), despite Saturday’s slight 0.5 percent ($8.75 billion) increase, compared to last year. Retail sales for Super Saturday weekend 2007 increased 11.5 percent ($22.9 billion) versus the same weekend in 2006.

“Unfortunately, retailers didn’t get much help from mother nature this past weekend which seemed to have curbed shopping trips and slowed sales levels during this critical three-day period,” said Bill Martin, co-founder of ShopperTrak.  “On the bright side, our numbers next week should indicate that the 2008 calendar shift—which allows five less shopping days this season—will provide retailers with better sales and traffic numbers as procrastinating shoppers spend on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday leading into Christmas.”

ShopperTrak also reports that year-over-year sales for the week ending Dec. 20 fell 6.5 percent, while sales versus the previous week ending Dec. 13 increased 22.5 percent. Total U.S. foot traffic for the same period versus the 2007 comparison week ending Dec.r 22, fell 24 percent.