ShopperTrak: May 2012

Total U.S. shopper traffic in retail stores and malls for May 2012

Retailers saw an uptick in foot traffic last month, a welcome change of pace after a slow April. May retail foot traffic increased 1.6% over the previous month. Two holidays in May, Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, drove the increase, but they weren’t enough to outpace the same period last year.

Because Mother’s Day fell one week later on the calendar this year, all Mother’s Day traffic was captured in May, instead of being split between April and May, as it was in 2011. Even with most of Mother’s Day foot traffic captured in May, the month still saw a 0.5% year-over-year decrease in foot traffic compared to May 2011.

Mother’s Day sales and traffic are historically bright shopping spots in the retail calendar. Though foot traffic was relatively flat year-over-year the week before Mother’s Day on May 13, retail sales spiked 4% as families splurged on the most important women in their lives.  The data indicates that shoppers visited fewer stores, but they bought more.

Retailers saw a second wave of shoppers at the end of the month, as many consumers took advantage of the long Memorial Day weekend and capitalized on holiday deals.

While foot traffic isn’t declining at the rate it was earlier in the year, it is still trending lower than last year. This increases the importance to each shopper who walks through a retailer’s doors, which is especially true for Father’s Day this month. ShopperTrak forecasts foot traffic will remain relatively flat and sales will increase just 0.5% in June.

ShopperTrak's data and analyses in this article are based on counting billions of shoppers in more than 45,000 locations across 74 countries. ShopperTrak is a leading retail technology company that anonymously counts people, analyzes data and identifies opportunities to increase revenue for retailers, mall developers and entertainment venues.  Find out more at http://www.shoppertrak.com.