Sensormatic Solutions’ annual ShopperTrak list predicts in-store traffic for the six weeks of the holiday season to be down between -2 percent and 25 percent year-over-year.

The 10 busiest days in 2020 will account for 34.2 percent of all holiday traffic as compared to 46.5 percent in 2019. As a result, the typical holiday traffic peaks will flatten, with more days sharing importance throughout the season, noted the report.

“While COVID-19 is reshaping the way U.S. consumers are currently shopping and will shop for the 2020 holiday season, retailers should remain optimistic,” said Bjoern Petersen, president at Sensormatic Solutions. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve noticed a shift toward weekday shopping as consumers take advantage of the new remote work reality while also consciously avoiding the historically-large weekend crowds. We expect this trend to continue into the holiday season. U.S. consumers continue to be more purposeful in their shopping journeys, so retailers need to make sure they capitalize on every in-store visit.”

In the U.S., the first, second and third busiest shopping days, respectively for the 2020 holiday season are Black Friday (November 27), Super Saturday (December 19) and the day after Christmas (December 26). The full list of predicted busiest shopping days in the U.S. are:

  • Black Friday, November 27
  • Super Saturday, December 19
  • Day after Christmas, aka “Boxing Day,” in some global regions, December 26
  • Wednesday before Christmas, December 23
  • Second Saturday in December, December 12
  • Monday before Christmas, December 21
  • Saturday after Thanksgiving, November 28
  • Tuesday before Christmas, December
  • First Saturday in December, December 5
  • Sunday before Christmas, December 20

The predicted top busiest shopping days in Canada are:

  • Boxing Day, December 26
  • Black Friday, November 27
  • Saturday after Thanksgiving, November 28
  • Super Saturday, December 19
  • Wednesday before Christmas, December 23

“The outlook for this year’s holiday season remains positive, considering traffic was down as low as -82 percent in April and has since improved to -25.7 percent for week ending September 19,” said Petersen. “Now is the time for retailers to strengthen their buy online pickup in-store (BOPIS) and curbside pickup services, which are expected to grow in popularity this year. It’s also crucial to provide a safe in-store environment where shoppers feel comfortable through offerings such as contactless checkout and real-time occupancy monitoring to adhere with social distancing guidelines.”