A New Holiday Season for Retailers After COVID-19By Sofía Hanna | Wed, 10/14/2020 - 16:57
The holiday season is approaching and retailers will face a new challenge due to COVID-19 restrictions. Regularly, Christmas time is the best for this sector, starting in mid-November and ending on Jan. 6. However, even those dates have had to change to avoid shopping sprees during this time of year.
In 2019, the end-of-year season brought Mexico an economic spill of almost MX$503.5 billion (US$23.6 billion) due to an increase in sales, with most of the revenue coming from electronics, jewelry, furniture, food, clothes and interior decoration departments, according to ANTAD. To keep results as close to this as possible, retailers have implemented several strategies, including sanitary measures, an extended shopping period to avoid overcrowding of customers and the installation of specialized emergency vans that buyers can find at mall parking lots. Pick-and-collect points will also be made available for virtual buyers to refine their online shopping experience.
Online shopping has taken on a huge role during the pandemic, helping businesses stay afloat and in some cases allowing them to increase their sales. If done correctly, CBRE forecasts an increase in sales of 40 percent in November and December. This could mean good news for some retailers. According to the Mexican Association of Online Sales (AMVO), businesses that have gone online after the pandemic have increased their sales and market presence since June.
E-commerce has grown significantly during the ongoing lockdowns and the ease with which shoppers finalize their purchase are attracting more to online platforms. “Almost 75 percent of Mexican consumers go to a shop only to look at products to then purchase them online,” said Andrés Ávila, Marketing Manager of Zebra technologies, in an article from Expansión.
Another issue companies are taking into consideration for this holiday season is the decrease in consumer income. Even if stores implement all sanitary measures and improve their online services, consumers may be limited in their spending due to decreasing income and growing unemployment. According to McKinsey & Company, the priorities for Mexicans right now are saving up and going to stores that have the right sanitation practices.