A recent research briefing noted that retail is up for a "big battle" at sporting goods in 2009, while many consumers are looking to become more practical in their spending habits.
Although focused mostly on sporting goods and mass, BIGresearch found that Wal-Mart barely edged out Dick's for the top spot and both are increasing their customer share. Dick's, however, has more followers among male shoppers. Click here to see a BIG Retail Ratings Report.
In its monthly "Consumer Intentions & Actions Survey," BIGresearch (www.bigresearch.com) found that Home Depot and Lowe's continue to hammer in the home improvement category (and we at SNEWS® know that both have toyed with stepping outside the home category into sporting goods and exercise equipment).
More than one of every two shoppers (57.3 percent, per the research) said they've become more practical and realistic in shopping and spending, up from 49.8 percent in December and up from 41.2 percent a year ago. Most are also saying they are more budget-conscious (53.4 percent up from 39 percent).
For the future, research revealed that more say they will spend less in the next 90 days than will spend more. Sporting goods' prognosis is flat over a month ago after showing down over a year ago. But that's not unusual: Per BIG, all categories are showing a down prognosis over a year ago. Showing "up" over a month ago were women's dress, shoes, home improvement, and lawn and garden.
What's hot? BIG's research showed physical exercise was on the list as "hot" -- right along with Jennifer Aniston and iPhones.