Retailers will pay an additional $ 223 billion for goods in 2 hours

Shoppers carry bags of purchased merchandise at the King of Prussia Mall in King of Prussia, Pa. On December 8, 2018.

Mark Makela | Reuters

U.S. retailers will spend $ 223 billion more in the second half of 2021 than in the same period in 2020, according to a Salesforce forecast released on Tuesday.

The amount represents a 62% increase over last year. It includes an additional $ 12 billion spent with suppliers, an additional $ 48 billion in payroll expenses and an additional $ 163 billion in logistics costs.

Salesforce vice president and retail general manager Rob Garf said consumers, in turn, should expect higher prices.

“Retailers will certainly bear some of the burden and consumers will feel it too, but given the significant increase in everything from manufacturing to logistics to labor, not everything can be passed on to the consumer.” , did he declare. CNBC.

“What we discovered in the first half of the year, even with inflation and the rising cost of goods sold, partly pushed back to the consumer, we are all a willing participant,” Garf added. “We’re willing to spend a little more. I think there’s enough momentum and positivity among people that they’re willing to absorb the extra costs throughout the vacation.”

For the study, Salesforce said it tracks quarterly transactions of more than one billion shoppers globally at physical and online retailers using internal and third-party data.

The forecast comes as trucking rates are at an all time high – about 49% higher than in 2020 and 83% higher than before the pandemic. The demand for e-commerce warehouses is also increasing with the boom in online shopping.

Mastercard said e-commerce grew 8% year on year in June and 95% from June 2019 levels. CBRE estimates for every billion dollars in retail sales, an additional 1 million square feet of e-commerce warehouse is needed.

“Retailers are trying to figure out when this inflation becomes a problem or killer of demand? Oppenheimer’s retail analyst Brian Nagel said in an interview. “No one knows the answer to that. It’s a moving risk.”

Salesforce also predicts that US retailers will experience a labor shortage of about 350,000 workers before November and the holiday shopping season. Garf said it will be a major catalyst that will push wages up to 46%, from a median of $ 13.02 for the peak holiday shopping in 2020 to $ 19 this holiday season.

However, Garf said retailers will expect more from employees, including managing inventory, fulfilling e-commerce deliveries, and executing click and collect or BOPIS – buy online, pick up in store.

Salesforce research found that retailers that offered curbside, drive-thru and in-store pickup options saw sales increase 54% year-on-year in the five days leading up to Christmas 2020, compared to 34% for retailers. retailers who did not offer these options. Garf expects these trends to continue this year due to cost savings for retailers and convenience for consumers.

“Retailers save on order fulfillment because for all intents and purposes they are outsourcing the last mile to the consumer and consumers are willing participants because we have all been wanting to buy a product and it doesn’t ‘was not available, or that we get it two, three, four weeks after the date stated when we received our confirmation email, ”Garf said.

“There is an aspect of immediacy, convenience and security that still plays a role, even as some parts of the world come back online and come back to some semblance of normal.”

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