There is another great article in the Chicago Tribune about what retailers should expect (or maybe what they should not expect) this holiday season.
Again, I just took excerpts of the article, but you can find the entire article here.
Even now, retailers see a blue Christmas
by Sandra M. Jones
July 24, 2008
"There's no cheerful way to say it: Get ready for a sober Christmas season.
Yes, it's only July, but retailers already are deep in planning mode for the holiday season, and what they are sensing adds up to potential trouble, with some experts saying this could be the toughest environment in almost 30 years...
J. Crew Group Inc., the high-end preppy retailer, is planning "very conservatively" for the holiday and attempting to simplify its assortments, Chairman and CEO Millard "Mickey" Drexler said in the company's May 29 earnings conference call. December has become "the biggest promotional month in the world," he said, a fact that retailers can't escape.
"I guarantee this year—I guess, it's a personal opinion—that the customers are going to continue to wait [for sale prices]," said Drexler. "I was in the shopping center the last two weeks; there are so many sale signs everywhere. People are smart, they know it, and they will wait."...
Economist Scott Hoyt expects more consumers to rediscover the need to save for the holidays."
I can't say that I am surprised that this holiday season is not predicted to be "wonderful" for retailers. Although J.Crew has acknowledged that they will be impacted by the current economic situation, I wonder if they will still recognize sale shoppers are important to retain. I just feel like some of their actions recently haven't been too "sale-shopper" friendly.
What do you think of the article? What do you think of CEO Mickey Drexler's response? Will his response reflect J.Crew's actions in the holiday season (e.g. more sales at J.Crew)?