The Christmas shopping season is huge for many retailers, but it has had a number of results for retailers.
For some, Black Friday deals can be the biggest impact. For others, sales remain consistently high throughout December. For others, sales will only increase after the Christmas season.
And this year, companies are considering the possibility of supply chain disruptions over the holidays.
A staple in the business loop, Tiger Pawn doesn’t rely on Black Friday sales, but it does see an upward trend during the Christmas shopping season.
“December is our top-selling month of the year,” said owner Dan Trim.
For most years, Trim said he would have an influx of customers in the last two weeks leading up to Christmas.
“We’re not busy on Black Friday,” he said. “These are more like the big retail stores.”
Unlike some business owners, Tiger Pawn has seen an increase rather than a decrease in product level as it relies on a different delivery channel.
“Lots of people suffer in business,” said Trim. “We’re seeing more and more people using our services, which means we have a more stable supply chain than retailers.”
Stores like Williams & Solliday Antiques and Fine Art have also dodged the chaos caused by widespread supply chain problems.
Doug Solliday and Melissa Williams are co-owners of Williams & Solliday Antiques and Fine Art. Their gallery has been in downtown Columbia for more than 20 years.
Compared to the rest of the Christmas shopping season, Solliday said that Black Friday is usually the busiest day of the year for its business.
He also said that they are trading in items that are generally not particularly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Last year we had fewer people than usual, but it was still pretty good,” he said.
When it comes to Christmas shopping, Solliday has found that antiques are always in demand. Their eclectic nature makes them a time-honored gift option.
Sabrina Garcia-Rubio, owner of Maude Vintage, said that while she wasn’t immune to supply chain issues, she’s also noticed that more locals are looking to sell.
“I think a lot of them are family members or elderly people who want to tidy up their home,” she said. “Maybe they spent a lot of time at home during the quarantine and just got this kind of clearing bug, or they might be people cleaning up for their elderly family members.”
For Garcia-Rubio, shopping before and after the Christmas season is lucrative for her business.
“We always expect a huge increase in customers, both people looking for gifts, but also those who have extra money because they are gifted,” said Garcia-Rubio. “You want to do the shopping yourself.”
John Evans, manager of Rock Bottom Comics, believes that post-Christmas shopping is much more important to his store.
Founded in 1973, the company is the second-longest comic book store in Missouri. They have a more or less steady stream of customers all year round, Evans said, and they don’t see any noticeable customer growth in November and December.
“We’re more likely to see a bigger crowd in January when people get paid for Christmas,” said Evans. “Christmas is a holiday when people buy things for others, and comic book collections are usually very personal.”
The supply chain challenges resulting from consecutive COVID-19 lockdowns have given the comic book store an edge.
“There have been some minor supply chain disruptions or issues, but not major ones,” said Evans.
Last year was particularly challenging, he added, but this year is far more promising with more people out and about.
“We are only just starting the Christmas shopping season. So I mean, it was fine so far, ”he said on a Black Friday phone call about the noise of customers pouring into his shop.
Alinge Laursen, owner of Deco to Retro and Vintage Clothing, is in a similar situation.
“It’s pretty good when it comes to Christmas shopping, but it’s better for my store in the week after Christmas,” said Laursen. “People get money, probably cash, at Christmas, and those who like vintage items come to my store the most during this time.”
Laursen’s thrift and thrift store is at least 16 years old, and she said she has seen more sales this year than ever before.
“I think it could be because a lot of people are interested in thrift and vintage too, which is my shop,” said Laursen. “I have a wide variety of vintage and newer items that I used to own. Now people are more and more into vintage. “