Retailers in Galway have been enjoying a very merry Christmas and are set for an even happier new year, after experiencing a welcome sales boost over the festive season.
Initial indications have shown that consumer spending over the Christmas period has been brisk, with an expected increase on last year’s figures. Stability following the announcement of 2013 budget measures and growing consumer confidence is understood to have contributed to the boon and Galway Chamber President Michael Coyle said that retailers were enjoying the winter uptake.
“There is exceptional value out there and many factors, such as the weather, also come into it. It has been fairly mild so people are out there having cups of coffee and things like that, so that all feeds into the atmosphere and ambiance. My sense is that it will be at least on a par or slightly ahead of last year once the figures are finalised,” he said.
However, he highlighted that increased numbers of shoppers did not necessarily translate into larger profits, with many retailers finding their customers taking a more frugal approach.
“I haven’t heard anyone say that sales are down but a remark that is being made is that the spend per transaction is definitely down. People are spending less per item so that means that there has to be more people spending for things to be on par with last year. I think that’s a fair summary of where things are at.”