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Retail, Vendor Concerns for Holiday Season


Heading into the Holiday season, some 46 percent of brands and retailers don’t have enough cash or are unsure if they do to pay for the additional staff, inventory, and operational costs needed, according to a new Economics of Holiday Sales report from Creditsafe.

The global credit monitoring and risk management firm surveyed 200 business professionals for its research.

Among key findings in the 24-page report:

  • The top three biggest concerns for the 2023 holiday season—lower order volumes and average order values (24%), not getting enough inventory from suppliers to meet demand (22%) and losing sales to competitors with better pricing or deals (22%).
  • Some 45 percent of brands and retailers anticipate that their 2023 holiday orders will account for 21 to 40 percent of their annual sales.
  • The highest increase in holiday operating costs will come from shipping costs (52% of respondents), marketing/advertising (51%), suppliers (46%), and technology (43%).
  • Excess inventory could wreak havoc on holiday sales results given that 25 percent of brands and retailers intend to order more goods than they did for the 2022 season and 78 percent of respondents said they have up to 50 percent of their merchandise leftover from last year.
  • How has excess 2022 holiday season inventory impacted brands and retailers? Some 23 percent said it has increased their maintenance/storage costs with 22 percent citing reduced profit margins and 9 percent mentioning depleted cash flow.
  • About 31 percent of retailers will promote holiday deals and discounts to shoppers earlier this season; 32 percent intend to offer more deals.