South Dakota holiday retail sales expected to be up
The numbers are still coming in but South Dakota retailers expect holiday shopping sales to be higher than 2020.
Sales are expected to increase by 8.5% to 10.5%, according to Nathan Sanderson, executive director of the South Dakota Retailer's Association. He said sales are being influenced by three main factors.
"The number one, the obvious one, is inflation. I mean when you've got just tons of federal cash coursing through the economy and then you've got supply chain issues to boot, certainly inflation is a factor there," Sanderson said.
He said another factor that can affect sales numbers is when people cancel travel plans due to the pandemic. He said often, they use their savings on retail spending and gifts.
A third issue that can influence retail sales numbers, Sanderson said, is a shift toward higher quality, more expensive gifts. As people continue to spend more time at home, they are buying new furniture, clothing, workout equipment and kitchen appliances.
Holiday sales across the country increased 8.5% between Nov. 1 and Dec. 24 of 2021, and the same period last year, according to Mastercard SpendingPulse, which tracks all forms of payment. Online sales — which accounted for 20.9% of sales — increased by 11%.
The sales are up even more — 10.7% — compared to the 2019 holiday season, just before the pandemic began. Exact state-level data is expected to be available in the next few weeks.
Sherry Bea Smith was shopping at Roam'n Around in Rapid City on Monday before visiting her granddaughter for a late Christmas celebration in Colorado.
She went to the local outdoors store to find a Black Elk Peak shirt — something you might only find at a South Dakota shop.
Smith said she did most of her holiday shopping in-person but used online retail for a few items she thought would be difficult to find locally.
"I want to support my community, I mean the community paid my wages for a lot of years so feel it's really important that you give back," said Smith, a semi-retired nurse. "And I shopped in Lead as much as I can and they have some very unique shops there so I really like to stay very local if I can."
John Machacek, who owns Roam'n Around, said his holiday sales are up from the past two years. He said other Rapid City business owners are reporting the same thing.
"You know I think it's a number of things along with the (warmer) weather, more people moving to the area and the supply chains," he said.
Sanderson said retailers expect supply chain issues to continue as they prepare for 2022.