U.S. holiday sales looking up
By Steven Hedlund, SeafoodSource editor
28 November, 2011
For U.S. seafood businesses that rely on holiday sales to push them into the black for the year, things are looking up after three uninspiring seasons.
This year’s holiday shopping season unofficially kicked off on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, and, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF), spending is up from last year. The average holiday shopper spent USD 398.62 this weekend, up from USD 365.34, and total spending reached approximately USD 52.4 billion.
And it certainly isn’t over yet. Today is Cyber Monday, when Thanksgiving-wary Americans struggling to concentrate at work after a four-day break take to the Internet in search of bargains and discounts. According to a survey conducted for Shop.org by BIGresearch, 122.9 million Americans plan to shop on Cyber Monday this year, up from 106.9 million last year. (And, by the end of the day on Monday, IBM Smarter Commerce had reported that online sales were up 18 percent from Cyber Monday 2010.)
Seafood businesses are among those trying to drum up sales on Cyber Monday, on which nearly eight in 10 retailers will run a special promotion, according to the NRF. In its e-mail newsletter, Captain D’s, a fast-causal seafood chain concentrated in the Southeast, promoted its “Virtual Gift Card” as a holiday gift.
Among those actively trolling Twitter for customers were frozen fish giant Gorton’s Seafood, Sun Burst Trout of Canton, N.C., GetMaineLobster.com, LobsterAnywhere.com and SlapFish, a seafood truck based in Southern California. Take a look:
@gortonsseafood — #CyberMonday would be easier w/ an extra $5,000 on the way! Enter to win Gorton's Any Way You Want It contest!
@sunbursttrout — Happy Cyber Monday! To celebrate from now until December 16th spend $50 and get FREE Shipping!
@getmainelobster — It’s Cyber Monday. Today only, 50% off at getmainelobster.com. Use coupon code “cybermonday” at checkout.
@Lobsteranywhere — The Wall Street Journal’s picks our Lobster Pies in their Foodie’s Guide to Cyber Monday 2011. “If you prefer...
@SlapFishTruck — What a better way to celebrate Cyber Monday then by following us on Twitter! We will be giving out t-shirts to...
Crabby Bill’s Seafood, a small full-service seafood chain in Florida, had an amusing take on Cyber Monday:
@crabby_bill: — Happy Cyber Monday! Give your computer (and your fingers) a break and come out for some great seafood. You deserve it!
Twitter aside, U.S. seafood businesses can expect this momentum to carry over into December. The NRF forecasts holiday sales to increase 2.8 percent to USD 465 billion this year. Given the economic climate of the past three years, that’s much-welcomed news.
28 November, 2011