By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Arlington, Va. — The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) reports total retail sales for the November through December holiday sales period are expected to increase by 4 percent over last year, reaching $738 billion in total revenue.
According to CEA’s “2013 Holiday Retail Sales Forecast” report, strong online channel sales will drive overall holiday retail sales growth this season. Online sales are expected to hit a new sales record, growing 18.7 percent to reach $57 billion. Mobile purchases, expected to surpass $8 billion for the first time, will grow by 35 percent and account for nearly 15 percent of all online holiday purchases.
“The online retail channel will dictate holiday sales this season,” said Shawn DuBravac CEA’s chief economist and research senior director. “Retailers and manufacturers should take note of shifting shopping habits as consumers increasingly turn online and to their mobile devices to make purchases.”
CEA expects overall retail sales during the 2013 holiday season to be roughly on par with 2012 holiday sales. Last year, consumers spent $709 billion at retail during the holiday season, according to CEA. CEA forecasts subpar growth of just 2.7 percent for general merchandise, apparel and accessories, furniture and other sales during the 2013 holiday season, creating a drag on overall holiday sales.
“Overall retail holiday sales growth looks healthy for 2013,” said DuBravac. “However, significant economic risks remain unresolved, and these could still negatively impact how much consumers decide to spend this holiday season.”
CEA will release its full 2013 holiday sales trends forecast, including the “20th Annual CE Holiday Purchase Patterns Study,” at CEA’s Industry Forum on Oct. 22.
To access the “2013 Holiday Retail Sales Forecast,” visit CE.org/Holiday. CEA will host a Twitter chat on Wednesday, Oct. 2, at 4:30 p.m. EST with DuBravac to discuss 2013 holiday sales trends and expectations using #CEAholiday.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.