最近30日間のアクセス数トップ3記事

2009年12月23日水曜日

クリスマスを考える(3) ― brick and mortar

クリスマスシーズンは商店やデパート、レストランにとって書き入れ時です。この時期の売り上げは毎年、他の月に比べて統計的に有意に高いと思いますが、祝日のムードでついお財布の紐も緩むのは私を含む凡人には仕方のないことでしょうか・・・。

アメリカでは、11月末のThanksgivingの終わりは同時にクリスマス商戦のスタートで、クリスマス準備やギフトのShoppingが、クリスマスイブを頂点に盛り上がります。

ところが・・・!

最近、このクリスマス商戦に異変が起きているということです。繁華街のお店に活気がなくなっているというレポートなのですが、人々はより簡便なオンラインショッピングに走っているということのようです。

不景気の影響からか、実店舗を持たず、オンライン営業に精を出すビジネスが流行るのでしょうか?

"brick and mortar"は、文字通り、”レンガと漆喰”ということですが、店舗の建物のことを指しています。レンガも漆喰も必要ないオンライン店舗は、コストパフォーマンスは高いでしょうが、なんだか寂しい感じがします。


On the whole, people are perhaps just being careful this year with what money they still have. They are afraid of being laid off from work or have been laid off from work, they need to conserve cash. There is a strong sense of financial insecurity and that’s bad news for the major retailers... and eventually for a world economy hoping the American consumers go back to their heavy spending ways. Fat chance that’s going to happen anytime soon!

Then again, there are those who also tell me that it is not right to measure consumer sentiment by observing the volume of shoppers in brick and mortar stores. Shoppers, I am told, are spending heavily online, even as they wait for in-store deals. Even as the brick and mortar retailers aren’t too happy with the season, surveys are showing online retailers are seeing an improvement compared with last year.Technology savvy consumers aside, it probably helps that online sales carry no sales tax.

CNBC reports online shoppers have spent nearly $21 billion during the first 43 days of the holiday season, a four-percent increase compared to the same period last year. The week ended Dec. 13 ranked as the biggest online spending week on record, with sales reaching $4.74 billion, according to comScore. The previous high of $4.70 billion was set during the week ended Dec. 16, 2007.
(Can't smell Christmas spirit in malls. Philstar.com. December 23, 2009.)


Despite positive growth in online retail sales, the US National Retail Federation is predicting an overall one percent drop in holiday sales for both online and traditional "bricks and mortar" stores. Overall, it is predicted that consumers will spend $437.6 billion (€305 billion), with a 3 percent decline in the number of purchases using credit cards.
(Consumers spend more online for Xmas. The Independent. December 22, 2009.)

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