“Why Retailers Should Display Christmas Merchandise Before Halloween” by Bob Phibbs via The Retail Doctor Blog

“Why Retailers Should Display Christmas Merchandise Before Halloween” by Bob Phibbs via The Retail Doctor Blog

Why do retailers put out Christmas merchandise before Halloween? Because customers buy it.

It’s that time of the year …

Time for the leaves to change and drop…

Corn mazes to sprout up…

Pumpkin spice lattes…

and the perennial favorite of writers everywhere…Christmas creep.

“I can’t believe they already have Christmas stuff out and it’s not even Halloween.”


Oh, excuse me, I suppose I should be in the camp that talks about “the good old days” from the movie A Christmas Story when shoppers would admire retailers’ windows during the annual Christmas parade.

Or maybe I should extol Nordstrom again because they won’t put up decorations until Thanksgiving Day.

Sorry, but there is one basic reason all retailers should do this. Wallets.

Most customers have a mental budget of what they will spend for the holidays; for decorations, gifts for the family, for the teachers/coaches, for the office – the works.

The sooner those customers have spent money earmarked for gift-giving, the less they will spend at the traditional time to think about buying holiday gifts.

Deloitte forecasts that 2022 holiday retail sales:

  • Will increase between 4% and 6%. 
  • E-commerce sales will grow by 13% to 14%, year-over-year. 

And NRF issued its annual forecast, anticipating retail sales to grow between 6 percent and 8 percent in 2022

While the economy may be cooling, there is still much room for you to get your share. But that means getting out there now

And that’s the opportunity for all merchants to put out the Christmas merchandise now.

This isn’t something new, but it is something smaller retailers have resisted, and I suggest they get on board. Especially with potential coronavirus variants still possible around the planet.

After all, catalogs with reams of holiday items have arrived at your mailbox since August. They know something…

No, I’m not saying those items have to be in your display windows or your prime selling space.

Just like you don’t start playing nonstop holiday music, you can put out more and more holiday items through November and into December. 

With Apple’s new iPhone expected to take a larger amount out of moms’ and dads’ holiday budgets, what will be left over for any store will be smaller.

Smart merchants look at customer behavior when merchandising their stores and making their holiday preparations, not their own preferences of only seeing merchandise in stores after Thanksgiving.

See also, What To Do During Your First Holiday Season As A Retail Manager 

In Sum

Established merchants put out holiday merchandise because they understand having it on the floor beats having it in a distribution center or stockroom.

Whatever sells is a bonus.

With many merchants having less staff due to the pandemic, it can take longer to get the merchandise out onto the floor.

And let’s face it, Halloween doesn’t have the breadth of merchandise across all categories as Christmas does.

We are pleased to mention that the Bob Phibbs the Retail Doctor (who has contributed to BRA with outstanding articles like this one and so many others that we have reposted over the past year) has also contributed to BRA monetarily. We value his relevant retail insight and encourage you to learn more about his offerings by clicking on the following link to his website:

– Doug Works, Executive Director BRA

We at Board Retailers Association are here to help you to succeed by providing resources and programs that enable you to lower day to day costs, increase margins and create more remarkable customer experiences. We provide a voice for our Retail Members and will never share your information. BRA has been “protecting retailers and a lifestyle” for 20 years. If you are not yet a BRA Retail Member, you can easily opt in to either Regular (no cost) or Distinguished ($100/yr.) Membership via this super simple join form