Statistics show Canadians are largely unmoved by Black Friday deals
If your business is considering going all-out with price slashing and early opening times for Black Friday, the first-day-of-Christmas-shopping frenzy that has sprung up the day after American Thanksgiving, you may want to think again. Apart from a few key retail subsectors, a new report from Statistics Canada suggests that most retailers in Canada don’t see much of an ROI on Black Friday efforts.
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Statistics Canada reported that, between 2006 and 2014—during which Black Friday sales really started to ramp up and creep into the Thursday ahead—annual retail sales in November have only increased from 8.4 percent to 8.5 percent. While sales have declined from 9.9 percent to 9.3 percent over the same time period, the report confirms that for Canadian shoppers December has maintained its status as the biggest shopping month of the year.
As the statistics panel added, there are a few select subsectors that experience an uptick in sales during November—clothing and accessory stores, as well as sporting goods and hobby stores—but these have more to do with the changing of the seasons and colder months ahead. Electronics and appliance stores, on the other hand, can fairly attribute a higher sales rate in November to the success of discount deals: Statistics Canada noted that electronics sales in Canada have declined from 16.1 percent to 14.5 percent in December, while they have climbed from 8.9 percent to 10.1 percent in November.
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But even with that shift, the data still points to December as the month of choice for the majority of Canadian holiday shoppers. For Canadian retailers, it seems that it still pays more to focus on capturing sales in the weeks to come.
Giving efficiency the full throttle at NASCAR
The NASCAR organization has long been synonymous with speed, agility and innovation. And so by extension, partnerships at NASCAR hold a similar reputation. One such partner for the organization has been CDW – a leading multi-brand provider of information technology solutions to businesses, government, education and healthcare customers in the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada. CDW provides a broad array of products and services ranging from hardware and software to integrated IT solutions such as security cloud hybrid infrastructure and digital experience. Customer need is the driving force at CDW, and the company helps clients by delivering integrated services solutions that maximize their technology investment. So how does CDW help their customers achieve their business goals? Troy Okerberg, Field Sales Manager - North Florida at CDW adds “We strive to provide our customers with full stack expertise, helping them design, orchestrate and manage technologies that drive their business outcomes.”
NASCAR acquired International Speedway Corporation (ISC) in 2019, merging its operations into one, new company moving forward. The merger represents an important step forward for NASCAR as the sport creates a unified vision to embrace its long history of exciting, family-oriented racing experiences while developing strategic growth initiatives that will drive the passion of core fans and attract the next generation of race fans. CDW has been instrumental in bringing the two technology environments together to enable collaboration and efficiency as one organization. Starting with a comprehensive analysis of all of NASCAR’s vendors, CDW created a uniform data platform for the data center environment across the NASCAR-ISC organization. The IT partner has also successfully merged the two native infrastructure systems together, while analyzing, consulting and providing an opportunity to merge Microsoft software licenses as well.
2020 turned into a tactical year for both organizations with the onset of the pandemic and CDW has had to react quickly to the changing scenario. Most of the initial change included building efficiencies around logistics, like equipment needing to be delivered into the hands of end users who switched to a virtual working environment almost overnight. CDW’s distribution team worked tirelessly to ensure that all customers could still access the products that they were purchasing and needed for their organizations throughout the COVID timeframe. Okerberg adds that today, CDW continues to optimize their offering by hyper-localizing resources as well as providing need-based support based on the size and complexity of their accounts. Although CDW still operates remotely, the company commits to adapting to the changing needs of their clients, NASCAR in particular. Apart from the challenges that COVID-19 brought to the organization, another task that CDW had been handed was to identify gaps and duplicates in vendor agreements that the two former single-entity organizations had in place and align them based on services offered. CDW further helps identify and provide the best solution from a consolidation standpoint of both hardware and software clients so that the new merged organization is equipped with the best of what the industry has to offer.