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Graphic of California

The state of local retail 2020: California.


We analyzed transactions for every day of the 2019 calendar year at over 40,000 local retail businessses across the United States, including California. The result is a comprehensive look at when local retail businesses make the most money, when they process the most transactions, and when customers tend to spend a little extra when they're out shopping.

The impact of COVID-19 on California retail businesses.

2020 has been a challenge for local businesses across the U.S., and there's no question that local retailers across the state of California have faced unprecidented challenges all year.

So before we take a look back at 2019, it's important to keep in mind the impact that COVID-19 has had on local retailers across the state. According to our data, the average California retail business saw total consumer spending from April through October, 2020 drop 11% compared to the same timeframe in 2019. Additionally, 20% of retailers in the state of California that were transacting before the pandemic hit are closed as of the last week of October.

Our research has shown that some types of retail businesses have fared quite well during the pandemic (sporting goods stores, home improvement stores, etc.), while others (clothing stores, book stores, etc.) have struggled. Whether a local retail business has struggled or thrived through 2020, this report gives insight on which days and months will be extra important for retailers in this unpredictable year.

What we learned about local retail sales in California.

California is the 10th-ranked state for average retail revenue in the United States, pulling in 10% more in daily revenue than the national average on a given day.

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How much do retail shops in California make on an average day?

On a given day, retail shops in California brought in $1,079 in revenue. On a typical day, the average retail business also processed about 13 transactions while seeing customers spend an average of $83.52 per ticket.

Sales revenue Transactions Ticket size
$1,079 13 $83.52
National Rank: 10 National Rank: 22 National Rank: 9

 

What days of the week are retail shops in California busiest?

Fridays and Saturdays are busy at retail shops across the country, and things were no different for California retail businesses.

Fridays were particularly big, as 17% of all retail revenue in California came in on that day alone. On the other hand, Sunday was the slowest day of the week for California retail shops, with 9% of revenue coming in on that day.

 

 

Saturday was the busiest day of the week in terms of foot traffic, with California retail businesses processing an average of 16 transactions per day.

 

 

Californians spend more per transaction on weekdays, with Tuesdays claiming the largest average ticket size of the week at $90.55 per ticket. Locals are the most frugal on Sundays, when they spent an average of $26.02 less than on Tuesdays.

 

 

What time of year do retail shops in California make the most money?

Californians clearly love to shop regardless of the season, but what does the average year look like from week to week at retail shops in California? Let's take a look.

May was the biggest month of the year overall for retail businesses in the Golden State, no doubt thanks to a huge lift from Mother's Day Weekend. The week leading up to the holiday was the 2nd biggest week of the year, and the week before that was the 7th.

While May may have been the biggest month of the year overall, the holidays was responsible for the single-biggest week of the year for Michigan restaurants: December 16th through the 22nd.

 

Top 5 days for California retail businesses.

The holidays was responsible for the biggest day of the year, and a total of four of the top five days of the year overall. Mother's Day was also big from a single-day perspective for retail shops in Michigan, accounting for the third biggest day of the year overall.

#1 #2 #3 #4 #5

12/23/19

12/20/19

Weekend before Christmas

5/10/19

Mother's Day Weekend

12/21/19

Weekend before Christmas

12/14/19

Monday Friday Friday Saturday Saturday

 

California retail shops on prominent days.

Retail shops look to events and holidays to generate big sales for their business. Here’s how prominent days rank compared to the average day.

  Day rank based on total sales How much did restaurants that were open make?
Day Day Rank Total rev vs avg % of restaurants open Avg rev Rev vs avg Avg txns Txns vs avg Avg ticket Ticket vs avg
New Year's Day 363 -70% 28% $959 -11% 15 15% $64.30 -23%
Super Bowl Sunday 360 -56% 50% $788 -27% 13 -3% $62.96 -25%
Valentine's Day 8 43% 84% $1,523 41% 18 42% $82.85 -1%
St. Patrick's Day 326 -38% 54% $1,042 -4% 16 21% $66.79 -20%
Easter Weekend 25 28% 95% $1,213 12% 14 12% $84.01 1%
Easter Weekend 98 12% 82% $1,230 14% 17 33% $71.84 -14%
Easter Sunday 362 -70% 39% $702 -35% 13 1% $54.04 -35%
Cinco de Mayo 322 -37% 59% $969 -10% 15 16% $64.57 -23%
Mother's Day Weekend 3 59% 98% $1,461 35% 17 33% $84.82 2%
Mother's Day Weekend 6 45% 85% $1,524 41% 20 54% $76.54 -8%
Mother's Day 310 -26% 60% $1,106 2% 18 38% $62.00 -26%
Memorial Day Weekend 19 30% 100% $1,175 9% 14 6% $85.44 2%
Memorial Day Weekend 92 13% 84% $1,212 12% 16 27% $73.72 -12%
Memorial Day 314 -33% 57% $1,064 -2% 15 14% $72.32 -13%
Father's Day Weekend 11 34% 100% $1,205 12% 14 8% $86.46 4%
Father's Day Weekend 44 21% 87% $1,250 16% 17 28% $75.56 -10%
Father's Day 329 -38% 58% $964 -11% 16 22% $61.21 -27%
9th of July 359 -56% 46% $859 -20% 14 10% $60.60 -27%
Labor Day Weekend 10 35% 97% $1,247 16% 14 10% $87.53 5%
Labor Day Weekend 107 11% 81% $1,223 13% 17 28% $73.89 -12%
Labor Day 335 -40% 54% $1,001 -7% 14 12% $69.48 -17%
Halloween 248 -3% 87% $1,008 -7% 11 -13% $89.91 8%
Thanksgiving Eve 118 10% 86% $1,156 7% 13 2% $88.09 6%
Thanksgiving 364 -82% 27% $590 -45% 11 -16% $54.08 -35%
Christmas Eve 24 28% 70% $1,651 53% 20 51% $84.57 1%
Christmas Day 365 -91% 14% $572 -47% 11 -12% $50.47 -40%
New Year's Eve 295 -13% 73% $1,073 -1% 14 6% $78.35 -6%

Methodology

Womply analyzed daily revenue for over 40,000 retail shops in all 50 states, including California, as well as the District of Columbia for all 365 days of the 2019 calendar year. Retail businesses were only included in the analysis if they qualified as small businesses, Womply had a full year of transaction history, and the business recorded multiple transactions per day, on average.

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