Many Kentuckians who waited until the last minute to do their Christmas shopping were rewarded with big bargains and smaller crowds.
But that’s exactly why many area businesses didn’t ring up the sales they wanted this holiday season.
“Traffic, sales, it was all down,” Ron Williams, a downtown Lexington business owner, said. “We did not see the foot traffic we’ve seen. And average ticket sales were down over last year.”
According to ShopperTrek, sales were down 2.5% nationwide the week before Christmas.
“It’s tough. It's really tough,” Williams said. “I mean you can't control it. Every year you cross your fingers and hope for the best.”
Williams said they have last minute shoppers to thank for most of their sales this holiday season because most of their revenue came in the last week before Christmas.
The International Council of Shopping Centers says shopping did increase 0.7% the week before Christmas.
Overall, Williams and his business partner Bryan Flynn said their shops in the Victorian Square were 65% below sales from last year. After the last minute shoppers swept through, they said they are now 20% behind last year.
Consumer confidence has fallen to a six-month low and retailers say the bottom line is people didn’t spend as much money this holiday season.