Will U.S. Gaming Retailers Unwrap Happy Holidays?
The holiday season is a major time for gaming retailers and 2014 is shaping up to be one of the biggest sales years yet.
No matter what the economy is like around the holidays, consumers always seem to spend top dollar for their favorite games.
With video game vitality in mind, here's a look at how gaming retailers are expected to do this holiday season:
Game Buying Statistics and Predictions
With the holiday season comes a major increase in game sales.
In fact, 2013 broke sales records with "Grand Theft Auto V" selling 32 million units during the holiday rush. In addition, the ever-popular Assassin's Creed franchise sold 12 million units over the 2013 holidays with "Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag."
Statistics like these help retailers predict sales for this year's releases and stock their shelves accordingly.
The major games for this holiday season have gamers making their holiday purchases early. "Halo: The Master Chief Collection" and "Assassin's Creed Unity" are expected to break sales records this holiday season due to early release dates.
Speaking of Release Dates
Timing is everything when it comes to the release of new videogames, which is great news for retailers over the holidays.
Most franchises plan their major releases during the holiday season, which creates a buying frenzy.
Between early releases that begin in November to the weeks leading up to Christmas, videogame sales nearly triple during the two-month holiday stretch.
Game sales have a lot to do with console popularity, which is why the more console variety a retailer carries, the more game sales they make.
Whether it's a Wii U, Xbox One, or PlayStation 4, gamers are usually pretty loyal to the console they play.
Major retailers like Walmart know this, which is why the retail giant carries the top three names in gaming consoles: Nintendo, PlayStation, and Xbox. This gives both in-store and online shoppers more gaming variety, which always boosts holiday sales.
Just as gamers are loyal to their consoles, they are also loyal to the game franchises they play. As a result, many gamers put aside a gaming budget that leaves plenty of room for franchise releases during the holidays.
Whether it's a midnight release or a traditional debut, franchise loyalty is becoming a large part of the gaming world.
Games are becoming more of a continuous saga, which creates a real following. Retailers who stay up to date about which games are trending and which franchises are releasing a new edition tend to perform better with holiday sales.
Gamers are all about being the first to get their hands on new products.
Although the massive following of certain franchises seem to create hype on their own, retailers still need to market the videogames they sell.
In-store promotions, especially promotions that are centered on the holidays, tend to increase game sales.
From posting release dates throughout the store to advertising through print and online ads, creating hype around popular games will help increase sales during the holidays and year around.
When it comes to gaming, retailers are expected to unwrap some successful sales this holiday season.
About the Author: Adam Groff is a freelance writer and creator of content. He writes on a variety of topics including retail sales and gaming.
How changing your company's software code can prevent bias
Two-third of tech professionals believe organizations aren’t doing enough to address racial inequality. After all, many companies will just hire a DEI consultant, have a few training sessions and call it a day.
Wanting to take a unique yet impactful approach to DEI, Deltek, the leading global provider of software and solutions for project-based businesses, took a look at and removed all exclusive terminology in their software code. By removing terms such as ‘master’ and ‘blacklist’ from company coding, Deltek is working to ensure that diversity and inclusion are woven into every aspect of their organization.
Business Chief North America talks to Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR and Leader of Diversity & Inclusion at Deltek to find out more.
Why should businesses today care about removing company bias within their software code?
We know that words can have a profound impact on people and leave a lasting impression. Many of the words that have been used in a technology environment were created many years ago, and today those words can be harmful to our customers and employees. Businesses should use words that will leave a positive impact and help create a more inclusive culture in their organization
What impact can exclusive terms have on employees?
Exclusive terms can have a significant impact on employees. It starts with the words we use in our job postings to describe the responsibilities in the position and of course, we also see this in our software code and other areas of the business. Exclusive terminology can be hurtful, and even make employees feel unwelcome. That can impact a person’s desire to join the team, stay at a company, or ultimately decide to leave. All of these critical actions impact the bottom line to the organization.
Please explain how Deltek has removed bias terminology from its software code
Deltek’s engineering team has removed biased terminology from our products, as well as from our documentation. The terms we focused on first that were easy to identify include blacklist, whitelist, and master/slave relationships in data architecture. We have also made some progress in removing gendered language, such as changing he and she to they in some documentation, as well as heteronormative language. We see this most commonly in pick lists that ask to identify someone as your husband or wife. The work is not done, but we are proud of how far we’ve come with this exercise!
What steps is Deltek taking to ensure biased terminology doesn’t end up in its code in the future?
What we are doing at Deltek, and what other organizations can do, is to put accountability on employees to recognize when this is happening – if you see something, say something! We also listen to feedback our customers give us and have heard their feedback on this topic. Those are both very reactive things of course, but we are also proactive. We have created guidance that identifies words that are more inclusive and also just good practice for communicating in a way that includes and respects others.
What advice would you give to other HR leaders who are looking to enhance DEI efforts within company technology?
My simple advice is to start with what makes sense to your organization and culture. Doing nothing is worse than doing something. And one of the best places to start is by acknowledging this is not just an HR initiative. Every employee owns the success of D&I efforts, and employees want to help the organization be better. For example, removing bias terminology was an action initiated by our Engineering and Product Strategy teams at Deltek, not HR. You can solicit the voices of employees by asking for feedback in engagement surveys, focus groups, and town halls. We hear great recommendations from employees and take those opportunities to improve.