Shopping Shift: Consumers May Forever Spend Less

The National Retail Federation predicts it could take years for consumers to start spending the way they did in pre-recession times and says that retailers will have to focus their efforts on closely managing their inventories, managing their markdowns and pushing strong promotions during the holiday season.

“The shopper's mentality has shifted, and, in some ways, it could be permanent,” said Mike Gatti, Executive Director for the Retail Advertising and Marketing Association (RAMA) division of the National Retail Federation (NRF) in an interview with SALES-FAX NEWS. “Some industry experts are quipping that the recession is over but nobody has told the consumer, as yet," he said.

Gatti says, people "are over wants" and are focused on necessities. Value and longevity are now as important as price. "Whenever you have an economic downturn like this, you see cocooning: eating and cooking at home, movie and game nights at home, so [consumers] start to look at what they can do for the whole family."

That said, the "Family Purchase" could very well be a significant contributor to this holiday season's sales uptick, according to Gatti. Larger ticket items, such as a new flat screen television or a family vacation, splurges that would not have been considered last holiday season, will be justified this year, if they can be enjoyed by the whole family.

This article was provided by BusinessNewsDaily, a sister site to LiveScience.