Euclid, the leader of in-store retail analytics, measured data on nearly 25 million domestic shopping sessions during December, revealing that shopper traffic and window conversion improved as heavy promotions kept holiday shoppers coming to the mall and consumer confidence rebounded to a five month high.
Average visit durations remained shorter than last year for yet another month, but engagement appeared to turn the corner from recent lows as shoppers were determined to complete holiday purchases in the shortened shopping window.
Euclid traffic index increased 9% year-over-year
Traffic in December increased 4.0% compared to the previous month and 8.6% compared to the same month last year. Shopping visits continued to grow in December despite headwinds from weather in certain parts of the country, driven by a heavily promotional season. Despite a sluggish start to the month, shoppers left a lot of holiday shopping for the week before Christmas, and traffic picked up significantly. Traffic remained robust after holiday, as shoppers looked to take advantage of even more attractive inventory-driven discounts.
Window conversion increased 140 basis points to 8.9%
Window conversion in December, defined as the number of shoppers who enter a store as a percentage of the total foot traffic, rose to 8.9% from 7.5% last year and 8.8% in November 2013. Value-conscious shoppers were deliberate with their trips to brick-and-mortar locations and continued aggressive promotions from retailers successfully won them over. As a result, window conversion reached another high for the year.
Bounce rate increased 40 basis points year-over-year
The percentage of shoppers who entered a store but left within five minutes ("bounce rate") was 10.3% in December 2013, up from 9.9% in December 2012, but an improvement from the year’s high of 11.7% last month. Shoppers began to show signs of increased interest in browsing through merchandise with the plethora of store-wide deals at brick-and-mortar retailers, especially during the days after Christmas.
Visit duration down 130 basis points year-over-year
Shopping session duration, defined as the mean time from store entry to store exit, was 22.2 minutes in December, a decline from 22.5 minutes last year, but the longest average duration measured since August. Depressed average shopping durations were seen during the first half of the month, but this trend reversed itself as shoppers crammed a significant portion of their holiday shopping into the week before Christmas and became much more intent upon reaching a purchase.