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Discount & Dollar Stores
Quarterly Index
2022: Q2

Discount and dollar stores generally see the biggest spike in visits around December as shoppers visit the sector in search of value-priced holiday gifts and party supplies, which explains the quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) drop in visits in Q1 2022. But now, dollar and discount stores are back to growth on all fronts – QoQ as well as year-over-year (YoY) and year-over-three-years (Yo3Y). And as consumers look to stretch their budgets, dollar and discount stores are likely to continue seeing elevated traffic numbers in H2 2022.

Analyzing brands including:

Change in Weekly Visits

In Q2 2022, weekly visits to dollar and discount stores were up relative to 2021, and increased significantly relative to 2019. The dramatic rise in Yo3Y weekly visits reveals the long-term advantage the pandemic gave the category. In the early days of COVID, dollar and discount stores were one of the few retail categories that remained open as essential businesses, which led many shoppers to discover the value priced one-stop-shops – and these shoppers have been coming back ever since. Meanwhile, the increase in YoY visits indicates that the category still has some room to grow. 

“The dramatic rise in Yo3Y weekly visits reveals the long-term advantage the pandemic gave the category.”

+19.5%

+19.5%

Weekly visits to dollar and discount stores increased 19.5% Yo3Y the week of June 27 2022.

Quarterly Visits on the Rise

 Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, and Five Below all saw their visits increase in Q2 2022 relative to Q2 2021, with Family Dollar and Five Below in particular seeing double digit YoY growth. And while this year’s visit spikes may not be as impressive as the YoY surge seen in 2021, the rise in quarterly visits compared to last year indicates that the leading brands can continue to expand to meet heightened demand.

“The rise in quarterly visits compared to last year indicates that the leading brands can continue to expand to meet heightened demand.”

+16.3%

+16.3%

Family Dollar YoY visits increased by 16.3% in Q2 2022.

Store Fleets Continuing to Expand

Many of the leading discount and dollar stores, including Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, and Five Below expanded their physical footprint in 2021 and are continuing to grow their store fleet in 2022. And while these expansions may explain some of the overall YoY and Yo3Y visit increases, diving into the data indicates average visits per venue have also grown between Q2 2021 and Q2 2022 – a good sign that the expansions are catering to a ready and eager clientele.

“Average visits per venue have grown between Q2 2021 and Q2 2022 – a good sign that the dollar and discount brands’ expansions are catering to a ready and eager clientele.”

45.1K

45.1K

Average visits per venue to Five Below grew to 45.1K quarterly visits per venue in Q2 2022.

Visit Magnitude Declining

Over the pandemic, as many transitioned to working from home and found themselves with newly flexible schedules, mid-day shopping increased. Now, the share of evening visits to dollar and discount stores (the share of visits between the hours of 5 PM and 11 PM out of the total daily visits) increased across the board in Q2 2022. This indicates that consumers have returned to some of their pre-pandemic behavior and are back to fitting their shopping in after work rather than mid-day.

“Consumers have returned to some of their pre-pandemic behavior and are now fitting their shopping in after work rather than mid-day.”

36.8%

36.8%

36.8% of Q2 2022 visits to Dollar General were between the hours of 5 PM and 11 PM.

Summary

Foot traffic to dollar and discount stores increased over the pandemic, and Q2 2022 data indicates that visits to the category are still significantly higher than they were pre-COVID, with the current economic challenges driving visits up even further. To respond to the heightened demand, many brands are expanding their store fleet – which is setting the category up for even greater long-term success. 

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