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Retailers, fretting holidays sales rates, are offering numerous promotions

November 25, 2013

It seems that many retailers are worrying about the amount of money that will be transacted at their credit card payment processing terminals this holiday season.

It seems that many retailers are worrying about the amount of money that will be transacted at their credit card payment processing terminals this holiday season.

Target recently cut its profit outlook for the remainder of 2013, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal, citing significant competition with Wal-Mart and other retail outlets. The news report suggests that even as retail sales and economic confidence increases, the earning outlooks of many retailers are failing to increase.

The Journal reported that Wal-Mart also cut its full-year profit forecast recently, predicting flat sales rates during the holiday season. The news source reported that many businesses are seeing their profit projections drop as they begin to match sale prices sourced from other retailers at their point of sale terminal. 

Target’s retail outlets also expect sales to be flat for the fourth quarter of 2013, according to the report. The company had already reported it lost customers for its fourth straight quarter recently, making 1.3 percent fewer transactions in the third quarter of 2013 than it had during the previous quarter. Customers also placed fewer overall items in their shopping carts for the first quarter in almost four years, suggesting that budgets are being restrained ahead of the holiday season. 

“It’s clear that the holidays will be highly promotional and that consumers will be laser focused on value,” Gregg Steinhafel, chief executive at Target, told the news outlet. 

Some retailers are starting sales early and price-matching extensively
To battle back against lowered projections, many retailers are offering earlier-than-ever discounts and sales this holiday season – suggesting how retail outlets, online and in-store, can drive more consumers to their credit card processing terminals.

Wal-Mart, for example, recently announced that it will begin its Black Friday sales a full week ahead of schedule, on Nov. 22. The company will also be offering an advertisement matching policy to its shoppers, allowing them to pay a discounted price if they can provide evidence that a product they purchase at the store is available at a lower price elsewhere.

Amazon is engaging in similar promotions: the company recently announced that it’s Black Friday sales would begin on Sunday, Nov. 24, with daily deals being revealed every ten minutes for the entirety of the following week. The company will also offer free shipping to try and lure new shoppers toward spending their holiday budgets at its payment processing pages.

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