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Who Buys Source

Average annual spending on all goods and services (excluding taxes) in 2006, according to household size: 1 person, $29,374; 2 persons, $50,652; 3 persons, $56.382; 4 persons, $63,897; 5 or more persons, $64,654.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008

Average annual spending on all goods and services (excluding taxes) in 2006, by region of residence: Northeast, $49,164; Midwest, $45,085; South, $44,501; West, $57,486.
 

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008

Average annual spending on all goods and services in 2006 (excluding taxes), based on household location: Central city, $43,780; other urban, $51,966; rural, $38,855.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008

Average annual expenditures for all goods and services in 2006 (excluding taxes), based on age of household head: Under 25, $28,181; 25-34, $47,582; 35-44, $57,476; 45-54, $57,563; 55-64, $50,789; 65+, $35,058.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008

Average annual expenditures for all goods and services in 2006 (excluding taxes), according to living arrangements of household head: Homeowner with a mortgage, $64,374; homeowner without a mortgage, $41,292; renter, $32,275.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008

A 2008 study by ICOM Information & Communications found that consumers ages 55+ are above-average users of environmentally friendly home goods, while men and women in the 25-34 age group are least likely to buy such products.

Media Daily News, 2008

According to a survey by Packaged Facts, through the first half of 2008, 69% of U.S. households used some category of money-saving coupons, including 46% of households earning less than $25,000 and 71% of families earning more than $75,000. Usage is highest among those consumers working in such white-collar functions as management, finance and administration, with smaller households (two persons) using coupons more frequently than larger ones.

Marketing Daily, 2008

When They Buy Source

Monthly retail sales in the U.S. (3-year average, 2007-2009): January, 7.6%; February, 7.5%; March, 8.3%; April, 8.2%; May, 8.8%; June, 8.5%; July, 8.6%; August, 8.7%; September, 8.0%; October, 8.2%; November, 8.2%; December, 9.4%.

U.S. Department of Commerce, 2010

Share of E-commerce retail sales by quarter (2-year average, 2006-2007): First quarter, 22.5%; second quarter, 23.2%; third quarter, 23.7%; fourth quarter, 30.6%.

U.S. Department of Commerce, 2008

According to a survey of senior retail executives, conducted by StorePerform Technologies, how the respondents ranked the most important promotional holidays for retailers: 1. Christmas; 2. Thanksgiving; 3. Labor Day; 4. Easter; 5. (tie) July 4th and Memorial Day; 7. Valentine's Day; 8. Halloween; 9. New Year's Eve; 10. President's Day.

Business Wire, 2007

According to researchers at the International Council of Shopping Centers, Saturdays typically bring in about 21-22% of the weekly sales and customer traffic for most retailers with shopping center locations, while Fridays account for 16-17% and Sundays generate around 13-14% of revenues.

ICSC, 2007

A 2007 survey by the Mystery Shopping Providers Association determined the average time that customers wait for service in the following retail environments (wait time in minutes): Gas station, 2:17; fast food, 3:16; fine dining, 3:28; bank, 4:02; grocery, 4:27; specialty retail, 4:28; clothing store, 4:55; outlet store, 5:11; department store, 5:23.

Research Alert, 2007

Why They Buy Source

According to a 2009 study of approximately 1,850 consumers ages 12+, 33% of customers who try a sample will buy that product in the same shopping trip. In addition, 58% of those surveyed said they would purchase the sampled product again.

Convenience Store News, 2009

The top frustrations encountered by consumers when shopping in-store: Not enough checkouts open, 37%; advertised items out of stock, 15%; prices not clearly marked, 12%; price at checkout doesn't match advertised/listed price, 11%; use of self-checkout is unclear, 5%; product displays are placed in narrow aisles, 4%; commonly used items are located at the back of the store, 3%; signs don't accurately reflect where products are located, 3%.

Opinion Research Corp., 2008

Based on a 2008 survey by Packaged Facts, 87% of consumers say they prefer to shop at retailers who offer coupons, and 89% say they are more likely to use coupons in a recession.

Marketing Daily, 2008

According to a 2008 survey by ICOM Information & Communications, of those consumers who don't buy "green" goods, 50% say it's because the products are too expensive, The next most common reason, cited by 17% of the respondents, was that they don't believe the products are that much better for the environment.

Media Daily News, 2008

Based on a 2008 consumer survey conducted by Cone Communications, 79% of the adult respondents indicated they would switch brands (provided price and quality were equal) to the one that is associated with a good cause. Eighty-five percent of the survey participants said they have a more positive image of a company when it supports a cause they care about, while the same percentage said it was acceptable for companies to promote their affiliation with non-profit organizations in their ads.

Brandweek, 2008

A 2008 survey of 1,100 adults, conducted by Cone Communications, determined that 38% of the respondents had purchased a product associated with a cause in the previous year.

Brandweek, 2008

According to a 2008 survey of moms with small children, conducted by the Intelligence Group, the most important considerations in choosing which stores to shop: Everyday prices, 80%; location and convenience, 53%; sale prices, 46%; good product selection, 46%; child-friendly environment, 14%; helpful sales staff, 10%; what brands they carry, 9%; whether they carry items not found elsewhere, 6%. 

Research Alert, 2008

Based on a 2008 study by The Consumer Network, 63% of shoppers age 50+, along with 50% of consumers under the age of 50, shop more at some stores because their store brand prices are better. 

Research Alert, 2008

A 2008 survey by Allurent revealed that 40% of consumers feel that a frustrating online experience would make them less likely to shop at that retailer's physical store. And 60% reported that when they have a frustrating shopping experience online, it negatively impacts their overall opinion of the retailer or brand.

Allurent, Inc., 2008

A 2008 survey by M/A/R/C Research found that 12% of consumers will stop shopping at a store altogether if it isn't clean, and another 32% will visit those stores only if they can't find the items they're looking for elsewhere. Consumers say that cleanliness is extremely important at grocery stores (46%), department stores (44%) and drugstores (40%).

Research Alert, 2008

According to a 2007 Ipsos Reid study, seven in 10 Americans (75% of men and 65% of women) either "strongly" or "somewhat" agree that when companies call a product "green" (meaning better for the environment), it is usually just a "marketing tactic."

The Center for Media Research, 2007

A 2007 study by IHL Group revealed that impulse purchases among women and men dropped 32.1% and 16.7%, respectively, when self-checkout is used instead of a staffed checkout.

Retail Wire, 2007

According to a 2007 survey by Carlson Marketing, the three most important factors that encouraged consumers to shop at particular retailers were price (93%), availability of merchandise (93%) and customer service (90%). 

Brandweek, 2007

According to a 2007 survey by the Verde Group, the main reason cited by women shoppers for never returning to a particular retailer was poor treatment by the store's sales staff. Men indicated they would not go back to a store if the products they were looking for were out of stock.

Verde Group, 2007

A 2007 survey by the Verde Group concluded that 67% of shoppers have ceased to shop at a certain store because of a bad experience. Only 30% of shoppers give the store a second chance, with an average waiting time of 14 months.

Verde Group, 2007

According to a 2007 survey by Leo J. Shapiro and Associates, aspects of the retail experience that inspire the most trust among consumers (rating on a 9-point scale): Return and exchange policy, 6.77; prices, 6.70; price signage and price displays, 6.62; availability of assistance, 6.34; ease of locating merchandise, 6.26; merchandise handling, 6.21; how purchases are rung up, 6.06; checkout lanes, 5.91; products in or out of stock, 5.82. 

Chain Store Age, 2007

According to a 2007 survey by Leo J. Shapiro & Associates, the percent of customers rating their checkout experiences at the following categories of retailers as "acceptable": Food, 69%; home improvement store, 54%; warehouse club, 72%; drug store, 62%; apparel store, 60%; department store, 59%; Wal-Mart/Target/Kmart, 49%. 

Chain Store Age, 2007

Based on a 2007 report by M/A/R/C Research, percentage of consumers who will visit a store less frequently or buy less from a store because of incorrect pricing issues, by store category: Consumer electronics stores, 36%; office supply stores, 35%; department stores, 34%; home improvement stores, 28%; drug stores, 26%; mass merchandisers, 22%; grocery stores, 19%; club stores, 18%.

Research Alert, 2007

 A 2007 survey of 1,300 consumers, conducted by Accenture, asked the retail shoppers what annoys them the most: Too little attention, 24%; too much attention, 15%; pressure to buy products, 12%; difficulty with returns, 11%; being treated rudely, 10%.

USA Today, 2007

How They Buy Source

A 2012 Harris Interactive survey asked U.S. adults how they typically pay for everyday transactions such as groceries, gas, dining out, paying bills, online shopping, etc. (more than one answer possible): Cash, 89%; debit card/prepaid debit card, 68%; checks, 55%; credit card, 53%; some other form of payment, 10%.

Harris Interactive, 2012

Average household spending on the following major categories in 2006: Food, $6,111 ($3,417 at home and $2,694 away from home); housing, $16,366; transportation, $8,508; apparel/services, $1,874; health care, $2,766; entertainment, $2,376; personal insurance and pensions, $5,270.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008

Excluding taxes, the average household spent $48,398 for everything -- food, housing, clothing, transportation, etc. in 2006, 4.3% higher than the previous year.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008

The Promotion Marketing Association reports that 76% of U.S. consumers use coupons of some type, saving themselves approximately $3 billion annually.

Promotion Marketing Association, 2008

Based on a study by Nielsen Online, approximately six out of 10 U.S. consumers use the Internet as their first choice for researching items purchased in a store.

eMarketer, 2008

Retail transactions at self-service kiosks are expected to exceed $607 billion in 2008, and increase to $1.7 trillion by 2012.

IHL Group, 2008

Purchases of cash cards (prepaid cards that can be used at a host of retail locations, branded by MasterCard, Visa, Discover or American Express) increased 40% from 2006 to 2007. Cash cards are now the third most preferred type of card to receive after restaurant/fast food and department store cards, according to research by Comdata. 

Comdata, 2007

What They Buy Source

A 2009 survey asked consumers what was the first item they planned to buy when they resumed spending on non-essential items: Vacation or personal travel, 19%; home furnishings, 13%; dinner at a nice restaurant, 13%; new computer, 9%; new car, 9%; used car, 8%; fine jewelry, 5%; HDTV, 5%; things for their kids, 5%.

Jewelry Consumer Opinion Council, 2009

Estimated sales totals (in billions) for major retail categories in 2007, with percentage change from 2006 in parentheses: Motor vehicle & parts dealers, $923.4 (+2.5%); furniture/home furnishings, electronics and appliance stores, $235.2 (+2.1%); building materials, garden equipment & supplies dealers, $354.0 (-1.3%); food & beverage stores, $572.2 (+5.6%); health & personal care stores, $236.7 (+5.6%); gasoline stations, $429.1 (+6.1%); clothing & accessories stores, $224.6 (+4.6%); sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores, $89.6(+2.8%); general merchandise stores (includes department stores, discount stores, etc.), $576.8 (+4.5%); food services and drinking places, $449.3 (+5.4%); miscellaneous retailers, $122.7 (+2.7%); nonstore retailers, $295.5 (+9.2%).
 

U.S. Department of Commerce, 2008

Through the first six months of 2008, business categories whose sales had increased the most, when compared to the first half of 2007: Gas stations (+20%); hobby, toy and game stores (+11%); warehouse clubs and superstores (+10%); and beer, wine and liquor stores (+6%). Categories that had declined the most: Gift, novelty and souvenir stores (-8%); home furnishings stores, (-7%); paint and wallpaper stores (-7%); and new car dealers (-6%).

U.S. Census Bureau, 2008

Share of consumer expenditures in 2006, based on Bureau of Labor Statistics research: Housing, 33.8%; Transportation, 17.6%; Food, 12.6%; Personal Insurance and Pensions, 10.9%; Healthcare, 5.7%; Entertainment, 4.9%; Apparel and Services, 3.9%; Cash Contributions, 3.9%; Education, 1.8%; Personal Care Products and Services, 1.2%; Alcoholic Beverages, 1.0%; Tobacco Products and Smoking Supplies, 0.7%; Reading, 0.2%; Miscellaneous, 1.7%. 

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008

Private label store brands now account for one of every five items sold in U.S. supermarkets, drug chains and mass merchandisers.

 

Private Label Manufacturers Association, 2008

According to a study by Mintel, a total of 5,933 "green" products were released in the U.S. in 2007, up from 3,422 in 2006 and 2,670 in 2005.

Research Alert, 2008

According to a September 2008 survey by Leo J. Shapiro & Associates, percentage of consumers who indicated they were cutting back on spending in the following categories: Clothing, 60%; food, 58%; driving (gasoline), 72%; medical care, 27%.

Leo J. Shapiro & Assoc., 2008

Research by Packaged Facts determined that U.S. consumers purchased $40.5 billion worth of gift cards in 2007, a 5.6% increase over 2006. The study estimated that 62% of all American adults bought at least one gift card in 2007.

Packaged Facts, 2008

Where They Buy Source

The five largest retailers in the U.S., based on 2007 revenues (totals in billions), with change from the previous year in parentheses: 1. Wal-Mart, $378.8 (+8.6%); 2. Home Depot, $77.3 (-2.1%); 3. CVS Caremark, $76.3 (+74.2%); 4. Kroger, $70.2 (+6.2%); 5. Costco, $64.4 (+7.1%).

National Retail Federation, 2008

The 6-10 largest retailers in the U.S., according to 2007 revenues (totals in billions), with change from 2006 in parentheses: 6. Target, $63.4 (+6.5%); 7. Walgreen, $53.8 (+13.4%); 8. Sears Holdings, $50.7 (-4.4%); 9. Lowe's, $48.3 (+2.9%); 10. SUPERVALU, $44.8 (+17.8%).

National Retail Federation, 2008

The 11-15 largest retailers in the U.S., according to 2007 revenues (totals in billions), with change from the prior year in parentheses: 11. Safeway, $42.3 (+5.2%); 12. Best Buy, $40.0 (+11.4%); 13. Macy's, $26.3 (-2.4%); 14. Rite Aid, $24.3 (+39.8%); 15. Publix, $23.0 (+6.0%).
 

National Retail Federation, 2008

Based on percentage change in revenues from 2006 to 2007, the top 10 "Hot 100" retailers in the U.S., according to the National Retail Federation (includes public companies with sales of more than $100 million): 1. CVS Caremark, +74.2%; 2. Rite Aid, +39.8%; 3. IHOP, +38.6%; 4. Amazon.com, +38.5%; 5. American Apparel, +35.8%; 6. GameStop, +33.4; 7. BJ's Restaurants, +32.3%; 8. Chipotle Mexican Grill, +31.9%; 9. FTD, +31.8%; 10. TravelCenters of America, +28.9%.

National Retail Federation, 2008

According to a 2008 survey by the National Retail Federation, the online retailers that consumers enjoy shopping the most: 1. Amazon.com; 2. eBay.com; 3. Wal-Mart.com; 4. BestBuy.com; 5. JCPenney.com; 6. Target.com; 7. Google.com; 8. Overstock.com; 9. Kohls.com; 10. Sears.com.

National Retail Federation, 2008

Percentage of primary household shoppers who visit the following categories of shopping venues monthly in 2008 (with 2006 percentages in parentheses): Power center (large strip shopping center that includes at least one discount department store or category superstore), 60% (59%); strip mall with supermarket anchor, 49% (55%); regional mall (large enclosed mall or shopping center that includes one or more department stores), 30% (34%); small strip mall with specialty stores, 20% (25%); lifestyle center (large mostly non-enclosed shopping center that includes fashion-oriented specialty stores and may also include department stores, restaurants and entertainment), 20% (24%); downtown shopping district, 8% (10%); factory outlet/off-price shopping center, 13% (10%); online shopping sites, 42% (43%). 

TNS Retail Forward, 2008

A 2008 study done by TNS Retail Forward concluded that approximately 60% of primary household shoppers visit a power shopping center (with a Wal-Mart or Target) on a monthly basis, followed by strip malls with supermarket anchors (49%) and regional shopping malls (30%). However, 51% of consumers ages 18-24 still visit a regional mall at least once a month.  

Retail Wire, 2008

Winners of the 2008 Corporate Research International awards for customer service, by retail category: Home Improvement -- Ace Hardware; Fast Food Restaurant -- Chipotle Mexican Grill; Full Service Restaurant -- Olive Garden; Convenience Store -- Speedway; Sporting Goods -- Dick's Sporting Goods; Consumer Electronics -- Best Buy; Department Store -- Nordstrom. 

Home Channel News, 2008

Based on a survey of its members taken by the National Association of Resale & Thrift Shops, 66% of the respondents said their sales had increased from January-August 2008, when compared to the first eight months of 2007. Of those stores with higher sales, the average increase was 35%. 

National Association of Resale & Thrift Shops, 2008

According to a survey of more than 8,800 consumers, conducted by the National Retail Retail Federation and BIGresearch, retailers considered to be tops in customer service in all retail formats: 1. L.L. Bean; 2. Zappos.com; 3. Amazon.com; 4. Overstock.com; 5. Blair; 6. Lands' End; 7. Coldwater Creek; 8. Nordstrom; 9. Lane Bryant; 10. Newegg.com.

National Retail Federation, 2008

A 2007 survey by Carlson Marketing identified the following retailers as having developed the strongest relationships with their customers: 1. Barnes & Noble; 2. Hallmark; 3. Bath & Body Works; 4. Best Buy; 5. Old Navy; 6. Target.

Brandweek, 2007

According to a 2007 survey conducted by BusinessWeek magazine, brands earning the highest scores for customer service: 1. USAA; 2. Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts; 3. Cadillac; 4. Nordstrom; 5. Wegmans Food Markets; 6. Edward Jones; 7. Lexus; 8. UPS; 9. Enterprise Rent-A-Car; 10. Starbucks; 11. Ritz-Carlton; 12. Amica Insurance; 13. Southwest Airlines; 14. Washington Mutual; 15. Cabela's.  

Research Alert, 2007

A survey by the Grizzard Performance Group found that 62% of American consumers do not bother to compare prices at even two brick-and-mortar stores before making most of their purchases.

eMarketer, 2007

A study by America's Research Group found that up 15% of people shop at resale or consignment clothing shops at least once a year.

USA Today, 2007

A late-2007 study by the Customer Respect Group ranked the top 10 retailers who treated their online customers the best: 1. Overstock.com; 2. Lowe's; 3. Ralph Lauren; 4. Kmart Corporation; 5. Sears Roebuck and Company; 6. Gap; 7. Old Navy; 8. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.; 9. L.L. Bean; 10. OfficeMax.

Marketing Daily, 2007

Based on a 2007 study by Colloquy, industries with the greatest number of loyalty program members (totals in millions): Airline, 254.4; financial services, 238.7; specialty retail, 137.4; grocery, 124.3; department store, 107.9; Internet, 98.6; hotel, 92.4; discount/drug store, 91.2; gaming, 77.6; fuel, 38.4; restaurant, 27.2.

Research Alert, 2007

Business Trends Source

According to research by CoStar Group Inc., major U.S. retailers closed approximately 7,000 stores while opening around 5,700 new locations in 2008. The 250 major retail chains CoStar included in its study reported plans to open nearly 4,000 and close almost 3,600 stores in 2009. As a percentage of total store count, retailers in the pet supply, dollar store/deep discount, warehouse club, drugstore, grocery and big-box discount categories are projecting the highest number of store openings in 2009, while retailers in the electronics, discount department, jewelry, apparel and office supply categories are projecting the biggest drops in store counts for 2009. 

Convenience Store News, 2009

Based on a study commissioned by the International Franchise Association, the number of franchise establishments in the U.S. is expected to decline in 2009 by 1.2%, from approximately 865,000 to 855,000. The sectors that are expected to experience the largest percentage reductions in employment are automotive, retail food and retail products and services, while sectors predicted to see the largest percentage reduction in economic output are lodging, business services and real estate.

International Franchise Association, 2009

Total retail sales in the U.S. amounted to an estimated $4.509 trillion in 2007, a 4.1% increase over the 2006 sales figure of $4.330 trillion. Retail sales in 2005 totaled $4.088 trillion.

U.S. Department of Commerce, 2008

Total e-commerce sales for 2007 amounted to approximately $136.4 billion, an increase of 19.0% from 2006. E-commerce revenues accounted for 3.4% of overall retail sales in the U.S. for 2007.
 

U.S. Department of Commerce, 2008

The National Retail Federation predicts that retail industry sales (excluding automobiles, gas stations and restaurants) will increase 3.5% in 2008. According to the trade association, industry sales will grow 3.2% in the first half of the year, followed by a 3.8% boost in the second half.

National Retail Federation, 2008

Top 10 companies according to 2007 ad expenditures for all media (totals in billions), with change from 2006 in parentheses: 1. P&G, $3.728 (+6%); 2. AT&T, $2.151 (+2%); 3. General Motors, $2.028 (-12%); 4. Ford, $1.761 (-4%); 5. Verizon, $1.659 (+6%); 6. Time Warner, $1.467 (-14%); 7. Cerberus, $1.363 (-10%); 8. Johnson & Johnson, $1.291 (-8%); 9. Toyota, $1.255 (-7%); 10. Walt Disney, $1.191 (-9%).

Nielsen Monitor-Plus, 2008

A 2008 Arbitron survey determined that 35% of consumers who sampled a product actually purchased the product during the same shopping trip. The study also showed that 24% of the respondents said they bought the product they sampled instead of the item they initially set out to purchase. The concept of sampling reaches some 70 milion consumers every quarter.

Brandweek, 2008

The top 10 brands according to measured ad spending (all media) in 2007 (totals in millions of dollars), with change from 2006 in parentheses: 1. AT&T, $2,243.2 (-3.8%); 2. Verizon, $2,144.1 (+11.3%); 3. Sprint, $1,156.9 (+12.6%); 4. Ford, $1,009.9 (+0.8%); 5. Macy's, $920.7 (-6.9%); 6. Toyota, $834.5 (-9.8%); 7. McDonald's, $808.4 (+4.1%); 8. Nissan, $750.6 (+1.4%); 9. Target, $727.3 (+8.4%); 10. Chevrolet, $723.5 (-4.3%).

Advertising Age, 2008

According to a mid-2008 survey by WSL Strategic Retail, 48% of consumers have "traded down" from their usual brands to lower priced brands to save money because of current economic conditions, while 40% admit to doing more shopping in "less expensive" stores.

WSL Strategic Retail, 2008

Research by Reis, Inc., determined that the vacancy rate for U.S. neighborhood and community shopping centers was 8.2% in the second quarter of 2008, which was the highest level since 1995. Meanwhile, the national vacancy rate for regional and superregional malls stood at 6.3% in the second quarter of 2008, the highest level since 2002. 

Retail Traffic, 2008

According to a study by McGraw-Hill Construction, from January-July 2008 the number of new retail construction projects (including additions to current structures) was down 37.4% from the same period in 2007. The report showed that the only retail property category still experiencing impressive growth was freestanding drug stores, which increased 18.5%. New square footage for supermarkets was up 0.9%, while retail construction in mixed-use properties was off more than 40%.

International Council of Shopping Centers, 2008

According to a late-2008 American Express survey of small business owners, tactics the respondents planned to utilize in coping with the challenging economy (multiple answers): Working longer hours, 64%; reducing or accepting lower profit margins, 56%; cutting business or capital expenses, 49%; raising prices, 48%; cutting back or delaying marketing expenses, 46% .

American Express Retail Index, 2008

ShpperTrak RCT Corp., which monitors retail sales and traffic, estimated that shopper visits to U.S. retail stores and enclosed malls was down 9.2% in September 2008, when compared to the previous year.

The Wall Street Journal, 2008

Direct sales (person-to-person sales of consumer products or services that take place away from fixed retail locations) declined 4.3% in 2007 to $30.8 billion. Approximately 15 million people are involved in direct sales in the U.S., according to the Direct Selling Association.

Direct Selling Association, 2008

Sales of gift cards are predicted to slip 5% during the 2008 holiday season to approximately $25 billion, according to a study by Archstone Consulting. However, sales of gift cards through outside locations such as grocery and drug stores, banks and kiosks are expected to grow by as much as 30%

International Council of Shopping Centers, 2008

As of mid-2008, the top 10 major markets with the lowest vacancy rates for retail space: Oakland-East Bay, 2.4%; San Diego, 3.6%; San Francisco, 4.1%; San Jose, 4.3%; Northern New Jersey, 4.5%;  Washington, DC, 4.7%; Las Vegas, 5.5%; Baltimore, 5.8%; Orange County, 5.8%; Boston, 5.8%. Markets with the highest vacancy rates: Dallas-Fort Worth, 15.1%; San Antonio, 14.3%; San Bernardino-Riverside, 13.7%; Cincinnati, 13.7%; Houston, 12.6%; Memphis, 12.4%; Indianapolis, 12.0%; Milwaukee, 11.8%; Columbus,11.7%; Kansas City, 11.7%. 

Retail Traffic, 2008

According to the International Franchise Association, there are now more than 3,000 established franchise brands in the U.S., spanning 230 different lines of business. While the fast-food service category still remains the largest franchise segment, the services category (composed of health & fitness, publications, and security and consumer services franchises) has experienced the largest increase in the number of new concepts in recent years.

International Franchise Association, 2007

Misc Source

Based on a mid-2008 survey by TNS Retail Forward, how Americans are changing their behavior to drive fewer miles and save money on gas: Planning errands to minimize the distance traveled, 75%; going to stores where they can do one-stop shopping, 58%; going to stores that are closer to home or work, 55%; doing more activities around the house instead of driving places, 47%; doing more online shopping, 26%; visiting friends and family that don't live close by less often, 23%; reducing miles driven during vacations, 17%; walking/biking to places instead of driving, 15%.

Research Alert, 2008

Primary sources of retailer coupons (multiple answers): Sunday newspaper, 53%; direct mail, 35%; in-store, 33%; loyalty cards, 22%; in-store circulars, 22%; weekday newspaper, 17%; product packaging, 17%; magazines, 15%; online, 11%.

Scarborough Research, 2008

A 2008 study by IHLGroup estimated that U.S. retailers are losing $93 billion in sales each year as a result of being out-of-stock on the products consumers are looking to buy in their stores. 

Retail Wire, 2008

According to a 2007 Yankelovich study, 39% of consumers say the level of customer retail service has declined in the last five years, while 18% believe it has improved and 43% say it's about the same. Seventy-one percent of the survey respondents stated that a bad experience at one store makes them feel negatively about an entire chain.

Marketing Daily, 2007

Based on a 2007 survey of retail real estate executives, when determining the best location for a store, 80% of the respondents said that demographic information is the most important. Other crucial factors include evaluating competitive information (51%), traffic patterns (49%), and geographic factors like the existing and future population (49%). 

National Retail Federation, 2007