(NEW YORK) — The retail industry is putting the finishing touches on its plans for the holiday shopping season. A big consumer trend is almost certain to continue this fall with online sales taking a bigger share of retail dollars.
“We’re predicting 15-17 percent growth outside of the stores themselves,” says Alison Kenney Paul, vice chairman and U.S. Retail & Distribution leader at Deloitte consulting. “Online via mobile via catalog – that’s where the real robust growth is going to continue to come from.”
The firm’s annual holiday season shopping survey forecasts only a modest increase in sales compared with last year. Sales at many stores could be flat, but “retailers are really using mobile communications as a mainstream marketing tool much more than they have in the past,” says Paul.
Shoppers will spend on big gifts but may cut back elsewhere. “Economic headwinds nagging consumers this fall include stubbornly high gasoline prices that continue to creep up and soft housing and job markets,” said Carl Steidtmann, Deloitte’s chief economist.
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