Inflation won't stop American consumers from opening their wallets to the nation's retailers this year on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
That's according to a Numerator survey released this morning, which finds that 78% of Americans plan to stick to the old tradition of shopping on Black Friday, followed by Cyber Monday (50%), Saturday (43%), Thanksgiving Day (25%), and Sunday (24%).
The "Thanksgiving survey" was conducted on 1,090 consumers between Nov. 4 and Nov. 7, 95% of whom plan to celebrate Thanksgiving. It demonstrates consumer celebration and shopping plans with added classification by generation. In addition, it illustrates how expected inflation impacts with views across Numerator's New Realities Consumer Segments, which group shoppers based on various financial and lifestyle factors.
"Despite inflationary concerns and tighter budgets, over half of shoppers still plan to pull out their wallets for a blockbuster weekend of holiday sales," said Amanda Schoenbauer, Numerator Analyst. "Consumers expect to use Black Friday and Cyber Weekend sales to purchase holiday gifts (61%) in addition to marked-down everyday goods (25%)."
These gifts will be intended for household members (42%) and shoppers (36%).
Regarding the types of gifts, Toys & Games are near the top of the list, with 37% of consumers planning to purchase them. Rounding out the top five categories are Apparel & Shoes (36%) of consumers), Gift Cards (33%), Home Goods (31%), and Electronics (30%).
While inflation may not stop shoppers from heading to the brick-and-mortar stores or pressing the "buy" button on the shopping screen, it may temper their enthusiasm for upping up spending compared to last year.
The Michigan University Consumer Sentiment Survey released on Wednesday showed that consumer sentiment fell 5% below October, offsetting about one-third of the gains posted since the record low in June.
"Along with the ongoing impact of inflation, consumer attitudes have also been weighed down by rising borrowing costs, declining asset values, and weakening labor market expectations," said Joanne W. Hsu, the Director of the Surveys of Consumers, in a note accompanying the release of the October data.
"Buying conditions for durables, which had markedly improved last month, decreased most sharply in November, falling back 19% to its September level on the basis of high interest rates and continued high prices. Long-term business conditions declined a more modest 6%, while short-term business conditions and personal finances were essentially unchanged, Hsu said.
A new report that just came out from Allianz Trade this morning titled Black Friday for consumers, Bleak Friday for retailers argues that retailers must have a delicate balance this Holiday Season between volumes and prices on the one side and profitability and liquidity on the other.
"Retailers expecting high demand and keeping prices relatively high may preserve their profit margins but face the risk of disappointing sales volumes translating into rising inventories and deteriorating liquidity," said the report. "On the other hand, retailers expecting low demand and granting generous discounts may see satisfactory sales volumes and inventories going down, but at a substantial cost: an average -20% price cut dilutes gross margins by -13pps (furniture retailers) to -17pps (electronics retailers) depending on product segments."