Flash Sales Outpace E-Commerce during the Holidays: Reuters - Gauthereau Group

Despite constant grumblings that flash sales, daily deals and private sales sites are a fading fad, holiday numbers indicate that consumer interest is dramatically increasing. According to this Reuter’s piece, holiday business on e-commerce websites specializing in limited-time or flash sales grew at least twice as fast as other online merchants. This was predicted by The BDO Retail Compass Survey of CMOs, which revealed back in December that flash sales would be a top priority for 30 percent of retail chief marketing officers during the holiday season. Even in July, a New York Times article painted a rosy picture of the flash sales industry. “Over the last five years, the flash sales industry has had average revenue growth of almost 50 percent a year, according to the research firm IBISWorld, which expects the number of flash sale sites to reach about 150 by 2017, up from about 90 today,” according to the Times piece.

Although the Times cited analysts who projected a deceleration of consumer enthusiasm, it’s clear from the first round of 2012 holiday numbers that flash sales are here to stay.

As I’ve mentioned before, flash sales, private sales and daily deals continue to be important marketing tactics. They enable companies like Totsy to bring you the best prices, whether you’re shopping during the holiday season or for a one-off household item. Ultimately, our consumers will continue to come to us because our sales are opportunities to buy high-quality products at unbeatable prices that big box retailers can’t provide.

With that being said, it’s important for every business (private and flash sales sites included) to continually introduce new ideas and marketing innovation in order to drive growth. Although private, flash sales and daily deals companies began by focusing on a specific task, we will expand our tactics in order to meet consumer demand. It’s also worth mentioning that Totsy meticulously curates our sales so they are tailored to our audience. By providing you with the right products and offers we believe we can better do our job to help make moms’ lives easier.

Habib Kairouz, managing partner of Rho Capital Partners and Rho Ventures, phrased it best when he told me back in August, “For a private sale site to be successful, we determined that two key factors must be present – the ability to procure merchandise and the ability to build customer relations so that you can continue to bring them the merchandise they want.”

In order to accomplish these tasks, we must stay connected to consumer demand and consistently provide a seamless and convenient experience for the customer. As long as the flash and private sale and daily deals industry continues to deliver on these value propositions, there’s no reason to expect consumer enthusiasm to wane, and that’s the standard to which we hold ourselves. Do you have thoughts on flash sales and its role in the future e-commerce? Would love to hear them in the comments section.