You've no doubt seen the headlines. "Retail sales slumped in December."
Sounds pretty grim, doesn't it? Did all those foreboding warnings of supply chain issues, inventory shortages, etcetera actually come true?
Take a look at the chart showing retail sales results by sector for December 2021 versus December 2020.
Pretty interesting chart, isn't it? In fact, overall December's 2021 retail sales were 16.9% better than 2020. What sales slump?!
But...now look at the Monthly Retail Sales trend charts on The ROI site. These quickly show how the trailing six month's retail sales compare to the same months the prior year.
See? For virtually all sectors, while December 2021 sales were up smartly, November 2021 sales were up even more than December's versus 2020.Hence the headlines, "retail sales are trending down."
In other words, it is true. Sometimes up IS down.
We know that we cannot change the ways that economists and pundits talk about retail sales results. But we will keep posting these trend charts each month, so that retailers can easily compare their own stores monthly sales trends to their retail sector.
Especially in these times, we must do all we can to keep some perspective.
Is 2020 continuing to wear you down? No surprise. And no shame in that!
Retailers are among the most optimistic folks we know. But the relentlessness of the disruptions and in some cases tragedies of the three pandemics – the virus, the economic meltdown, and the civil unrest – followed by the wildfires in the West and the hurricanes in the Southeast, now compounded by the uncertainties of national election. Oh, and then there's the impending flu season. And... And...
It IS a lot. And it feels as if there is no relief in sight. But maybe there is.
The just-released "2021's Main Street Business Survivor Study" from the Pandenomics series conducted by the PYMNTS.com folks* focuses on the "Main Street Survivors:" those small to medium sized businesses "that have weathered the pandemic's fallout."
What have these "survivors" done differently than the rest of SMB businesses? Here are the major findings of their study. We think that you'll see many of the survival steps you have taken, or be prompted to adopt some others.
Retailing is so great. Every retailer is an optimist, a people-person, and a bold risk taker. (We know; been there, done that.) Every retailer wants to get their stores re-opened, and their staff people re-employed.
Granted, there are many arguments, pro and con, about "Re-Opening the Economy." And in a number of communities in the U.S. and elsewhere, some re-opening of stores and restaurants is occurring.
Just this morning we saw yet another article speculating about the staying power of online shopping, in this instance, grocery shopping.
Of course, it's not just media pundits who are looking for answers to this question about online versus in-store shopping. Retailers are living with this issue, and they have to make decisions.
YOUR GOAL: QUICKLY GET TO A FIRST DRAFT.
Face it. Sales are dropping. By how much? For how long? Nobody knows for sure.
But, you can make some assumptions, some educated guesses. Put those into the 3-in-1 Cash Flow Calculator.
These totally volatile times cause a lot of opinions and fears to be swirling around. Seeing "what if...?" can be very helpful.
All in just minutes. On your own.
Each of us, our households, businesses and communities are in different stages of shutdown due to the coronavirus.
While we cannot speak to when this will end, we do have some ideas for dealing with the "fog of uncertainty" that hangs over us all.
Still less than $1 a day! 👀