Thanks for Visiting!

Register for free to get the full story.

Sign Up
Already have a account? Log In

October 2022’s Retail Rebound

Ethan Chernofsky
November 14, 2022
October 2022’s Retail Rebound

Retail foot traffic picked up again in October ahead of a much anticipated holiday season. We dove into the visit data to find out which categories are making the biggest comeback and how this year’s extended holiday season stacks up against 2021. 

Year-over-Three-Year Foot Traffic Swings Positive 

September was difficult for much of the retail landscape, as inflation took a toll on consumer spending. But the tide has turned in recently, with weekly visits since mid-October up relative to pre-pandemic 2019. Early holiday shoppers stocking up on gifts and consumers making peace with the current prices drove an October retail rebound ahead of a critical holiday season. 

Positive Trends Across the Board

Critically, the October rebound was not limited to just a few retail segments – diving into key categories reveals that year-over-three-year (Yo3Y) foot traffic trends improved across the board. Sectors that were already on a Yo3Y growth path increased further, while segments that sustained foot traffic losses in previous months saw their visit gaps narrow. 

Following a brief decline in September, the Grocery segment returned to growth with October visits up 4.3% relative to 2019. Discount & Dollar stores saw its Yo3Y foot traffic grow from 14.5% in September to 19.9% in October, while Yo3Y visits to Superstores rose from 0.8% to 4.6% in the same period. Yo3Y foot traffic growth to Pet Stores and Car Shops also accelerated. 

October QSR visits were also up compared to 2019, reversing the Yo3Y declines of August and September. And Home Improvement, Shopping Centers, and Clothing didn’t quite reach 2019 levels, but still succeeded in narrowing their visit gaps significantly. The growth is critical, especially ahead of the holiday season and in the final stages of a year defined by tremendous volatility.

Critical Context For Year-over-Year Declines

And while many categories saw visits fall relative to 2021, the year-over-year (YoY) declines should also be understood within the context of the wider brick-and-mortar resurgence. Last year, as shops and services reopened, the pent-up demand of 2020 and early 2021 led to considerable retail visit surges – and now, foot traffic in many segments is normalizing. But the YoY declines are more a testament of the success of last year’s retail performance than they are indicative of any true contraction, especially given the wider picture of Yo3Y strength.

2022’s Extended Holiday Season 

Month-over-month (MoM) data also provides another reason for optimism ahead of the holidays. Pre-pandemic, holiday shopping usually began in November, with Black Friday marking the official start of the season. This is illustrated by pre-pandemic October MoM visit trends – foot traffic data also shows that October 2019 visits to key retail categories such as Shopping Centers and Department Stores stayed relatively close to September 2019 levels.

But last year’s holiday season extended into the early fall, as retailers called on customers to shop for gifts ahead of time in anticipation of supply chain related shortages. Customers listened and drove the start of the holiday shopping season up, with key retail categories seeing a significant MoM boost in October 2021. 

This year also saw a noticeable MoM increase in October retail visits, although the growth was not as dramatic as in 2021. Critically, however, many retailers have recently reported inventory excesses – so this year’s extended holiday season is likely not driven by customers looking to avoid last-minute empty shelves. Instead, the early start to the 2022 holiday season may be motivated by consumers excited to shop for the first “normal” holiday season since the end of the pandemic. So while this year’s October MoM increases are not as sharp as last year’s, the customer-driven extension of the holiday season beyond November despite inflation and tighter budgets is an extremely positive sign for what lies ahead. 

It is also important to remember that, although 2021’s holiday season started early, its peaks were limited by the impact of Omicron in mid-December. But this year, the holiday season is both starting early and expected to continue all the way through, which should give retailers even more time than last year to serve consumers looking to make the most of this year’s holidays. If current trends continue, then, 2022’s extended holiday shopping season may well outperform 2021’s. 

For more data-driven retail insights, visit

Get 3 brand & industry
breakdowns every week

Subscribe to the newsletter

Great! Prepare your inbox for data-driven insights...
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Get a Demo

Please enter your first name
Please enter your last name
Please provide a valid email
Please enter your email
Please enter company name

Thanks for reaching out!

One of our experts will be in touch soon

Try Free
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
It’s Showtime! Movie Theaters in the Spotlight
5 Limited Time Offers (LTOs) Driving Restaurant Traffic
Department Store Deep-Dive: Belk
Regional Grocery Chains Staying Ahead of the Competition
Five Chains that Rightsized for Success
Unlocking the Potential of Offline Retail Media Networks
Dining Out With Darden
What’s in Store for Self-Storage?
Nike + lululemon Update: Strong Performance Amid Expansion Plans
Many Ways to Win: Midwest Grocery Deep Dive
Retail, Reinvented: The Rise of the Pop-Up Shop
Navigating a New Normal in Business Travel & Commutes Office Index: February 2023 Recap
Retail Categories Staying Strong in Volatile Environment
Ulta Beauty: Poised for Success into 2023 Mall Index February 2023: Reasons for Continued Optimism
Catching Up With DICK’s & Hibbett
The Miami-Dade Arena: An Advertising Slam Dunk
Car Washes Revving Up Visits
Tuesday Morning and Sunrises in Home Furnishing
Dining & Valentine’s Day Recap
2023: The Year of the Discount Store
Aldi’s Success Highlights Growing Demand for Value Groceries
5 Retail & Service Categories Holding onto Pandemic Gains in 2023
Visitor Insights from Super Bowl 2023
2023 First Look: Home Improvement Update
How Are Target, Walmart, and Wholesale Clubs Faring in 2023?
Department Store Deep-Dive: Nordstrom
Off-Price: Taking Off in Uncertain Times
Checking in On Middle-Class Hubs
Who Attends the Super Bowl? Office Index: January 2023 Recap
Focusing On Fitness: Q4 and January Recap Mall Index: January 2023 – Returning Mall Normalcy?
Location Intelligence Insights Into Concert Attendance
Winning Dining Strategies for 2023
In-N-Out Burger: What to Expect as the Brand Moves East
Location Intelligence Breakdown: Coffee Caps-Off 2022
Digitally Native Brands Lean Into Brick & Mortar
Washington, D.C. Population Changes & Migration Trends
A Location Intelligence Perspective on Macy’s Rightsizing
Amazon-Powered Shopping: The Future of Brick-and-Mortar Grocery?
Cold Weather, Hot Visits: Diving into Winter Resorts
Wawa and 7-Eleven: Leaning Into the “Slurpee Effect”
2022 and Beyond: Catching Up With McDonald’s & Chipotle
Let’s Have Some Fun! Going Out Is In’s Q4 2022 Quarterly Index Adds Industry Executives to Leadership Team To Drive Company's Next Phase of Growth
5 Emerging Retail Formats: 2023’s Brick-and-Mortar Evolution
Grocery Update: Zooming in on the Lone Star State
2022 Office Recap: The Year of the TGIF Work Week
What Lies Ahead for Brick-and-Mortar Luxury in 2023 Mall Indexes: December 2022 Recap
Looking Back on 2022’s Holiday Shopping Season
Post-Pandemic Migration Trends in New York
Top Retailers for 2023
The Live Sports Advertising Opportunity
Domestic Migration to the Mountain States: Small Shifts with Big Implications
New Year, New Food: 5 Dining Trends For 2023
This is Why Shop-in-Shops Are Everywhere
Super Saturday 2022 Recap
The San Francisco Shift
Grocery Year-End Update: Publix in the Spotlight
Three Ways Retailers Can Think Small to Increase Store Impact
Offline Beauty Is on an Upswing
The Evolving Migration Patterns of New York’s Florida Snowbirds Office Index: November 2022 Recap
How Viral Social Media Trends Can Drive Offline Engagement
Are You Ready for Some Football? Experiential Marketing Shows Promise
Mall and Shopping Center Trends For 2023
Retail Corridors and Indoor Malls: A Holiday Head-to-Head
Placer Bytes: Nike, lululemon, and GameStop Update Mall Indexes: November 2022 Update
Black Friday 2022: Consumers Hear the Call
Digitally Native Brands: Taking Off, Offline
Discount and Dollar Stores Leading the Pack
Turkey Wednesday 2022
Retail’s Evolving Holiday Season
Placer Bytes: Starbucks and Department Stores Ahead of Black Friday
Ulta: A Force to be Reckoned With
College Towns Drive Dining Growth
Foot Traffic Trends Reveal Consumers Ready for Holiday Cheer
How Retailers Can Win Big By Going Small
How Are Consumers Feeling Ahead of Black Friday 2022?
Off-Price, Hibbett, and Dick’s Pre-Holiday Check-in
Ho, Ho, Wholesale: Costco, Sam’s Club, and BJ’s
October 2022’s Retail Rebound
Target and Walmart Ahead of the Holidays
Home Improvement: Leave it to the Pros
Despite Inflation, Holiday Season is Off to a Good Start Office Index: October 2022 Recap Mall Indexes- October 2022 Update
Americans Double Down on Fitness
The State of Grocery
CVS and Walgreens: The Wave Continues
Coffee Chains Brewing Up Visits Spotlight: Pizza Players
What Drove COVID-Era Urban Migration Trends?
Kroger and Albertsons: A Merging of Strengths