Exceeding forecasts, Dec. 21, the last Saturday shopping day before Christmas 2019, has been confirmed as the single biggest retail sales day in U.S. History.
According to retail research firm Customer Growth Partners, consumers on Super Saturday spent a total of $34.4 billion and that exceeded 2019 Black Friday sales by 10 percent. “Paced by the ‘Big Four’ mega-retailers — Walmart, Amazon, Costco and Target — Super Saturday was boosted by the best traffic our team has seen in years,” Craig Johnson, president of the retail research firm told Bloomberg Monday (Dec. 23)
Johnson cited stronger personal finances, high employment and robust income as drivers of the sales records. More customers are shopping online, as well, as retailers offer improved web platforms. (58 percent of sales growth from 2018 occurred online.
This holiday shopping season saw its next biggest shopping days as Dec. 14, with $28.1 billion; and Cyber Monday, with $19.1 billion.
While traditional shopping malls yet again had overall decreased pedestrian traffic, the conversion rate, or the percentage of people who go to malls and make a purchase, rose, Johnson said. Even long-struggling department stores “had their best weekend of the season,” he said.
Until being unseated by Super Saturday, Black Friday has historically been the largest single day of retail sales. Recent social media sales innovations and a robust economy further the dominance of online shopping. Millennials’ buying habits have increased both Black Friday and online sales, and they continue to shape branding and in-person consumer engagement trends.
But this past Super Saturday is officially dominant in United States retail history. And, despite ever-evolving online innovations, traditional retail engagement will likely continue into the 2020s and beyond.
“The question now is whether [Saturday’s] stellar momentum leads to sustained economic growth into 2020 and beyond,” Johnson said.