Santa and his little helpers are preparing for the Christmas peak, but when exactly are shoppers likely to surge into stores in Australia? At ShopperTrak, we’ve analysed historic traffic data points to produce a list of the top five most anticipated Australian Christmas shopping days. These will be the busiest days in stores for the season, so it’s essential for retailers to be equipped for the festive rush, making every store visit magical, memorable and, of course, profitable.
- Boxing Day – Wednesday 26th December
Boxing Day is a very big deal in Australian stores, with seasonal sales kicking off, causing a dash into stores as shoppers hunt for bargains. According to our data, Boxing Day has been the heaviest-traffic day in Australia for the last four years, and our analysts predict it will top the table again this year. Seize this golden opportunity – delight shoppers with outstanding service and build on the relationship in the coming year.
- Panic Thursday – 20th December
The second busiest day for Australian festive shopping this year will be Thursday 20th December, we predict. It’s very likely the point at which shoppers get serious about gift and food buying. Plan for this day carefully as it presents ideal opportunities to engage with shoppers and boost conversions of full-price items. Shoppers know that it is probably too late to order online by this stage, so it’s a great chance for physical stores to assist time-pressed shoppers with knowledgeable staff and fantastic gift ideas.
- Friday 21st December
As Christmas day edges nearer, Friday 21st will be buzzing in stores – the third most hectic day in Aussie stores ShopperTrak predicts. Parties during the final weekend before Christmas are a given, so fashion, footwear and health and beauty stores should be fully stocked, looking stunning, and with well-trained staff available to help with add-on accessories and extras to sell-up for that perfect party outfit.
- Super Saturday – 22nd December
The final Saturday before Christmas is always a popular time for gift and food and drink purchases, so expect a last minute stampede this year. In 2018 Christmas Day falls on a Tuesday– early in the week – this Saturday could be one of the last chances for shoppers to cross gift purchases off their lists. We’d recommend using past traffic data to know when the Super Saturday power hours will come. At these times be sure to have your best staff on hand to pass on much-needed product knowledge and to provide super-slick service at the check-out.
- Saturday 15th December
This year, with four pre-Christmas December Saturdays on the calendar, retailers have an extra bumper trading day on which to generate a fantastic festive ambience in stores. As the fifth busiest shopping day of the season, Saturday 15th December might be ideal for hosting a themed in-store event. How about chocolate-tasting sessions or a Christmas party pampering evening with mulled wine and gift tokens to spend in the New Year?
This Christmas, focus on the Three S’s: Staffing, stocking and sales
At Christmas, preparation is critical for driving revenue and delivering an excellent customer experience. With staff scheduling it must be all hands on deck for known peak days and those vital ‘power hours’ when stores are at their liveliest. This is important not only for on-floor shopper assistance, but also for re-stocking merchandise and other operational activities such as Click and Collect and returns processing.
“Ensuring that key merchandise is in stores, especially during these Top Five days,” says Brian Field, senior director of retail consulting practice at ShopperTrak. “Scheduling associates for the right days at the right times will allow retailers to provide their customers with the intended experience and keep them coming back well beyond the Christmas and New Year season.”
Christmas is critical for most retailers. Seize the opportunity and speak to a local ShopperTrak expert today. Our team will help you tackle peak trading pain points and maximise the opportunities these busy times present in-store.