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Survey: Black Friday, Cyber Monday sales expected to grow 1.8%


Chicago Chief marketing officers at leading U.S. retailers expect both “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday” sales to grow 1.8% this holiday season, according to accounting and consulting firm BDO Seidman, LLP.

When asked which product category will perform the strongest this holiday season, most (39%) of the CMOs said toys would top the list.

The majority (96%) of retailers said they will increase promotions and discounts this year. When asked which in-store tactic they will be focusing on most heavily for the season, most CMOs (43%) cite special events.

Meanwhile, more than half (55%) of retailers planning online campaigns will depend on e-mail promotions to boost holiday sales. When it comes to which product category will see the most discounts this year, more than a third (37%) said consumer electronics.

“Retailers plan to focus on promotions for the entire holiday season so there will be less emphasis on Black Friday and Cyber Monday than in years past,” said Ted Vaughan, a partner at BDO Seidman. “Further, the heavy discounting necessary to get consumers out and shopping on Black Friday and Cyber Monday will preclude retailers from reaping major sales gains. However, the fact that most retailers do not expect to see a decrease in sales on these days is a sign that the economy is stabilizing.”

Gift-card sales are only expected to account for 5% of holiday sales, down from nearly 12% in 2008. More than half (57%) of retailers expect gift-card sales to be flat this year, while only 32% expect gift-card sales will increase and 12% project a decrease. Overall, retailers project a 0.76% drop in gift-card sales this season.

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