How Did the Weather Impact November Sales for Stores and Restaurants?

fall shopping


November is typically the start of the holiday shopping season. There are many factors that affect when shoppers make purchases and what they buy, but there is no greater variable than the weather.

The eastern third of the United States saw cooler year-on-year temperatures, which drove demand and favorable comps for winter apparel, heaters, and other seasonal products. In fact, according to Planalytics, apparel retailers saw an increase of $267 million in sales for the month of November in the eastern third of the country. Shoppers in the Northeast, Southeast, and the Great Lakes area purchased fleece, scarves, boots, and outerwear.

Conversely, residents of the Rockies, Plains, and the West Coast experienced much warmer temperatures than normal. Because of this, many decided to delay purchasing seasonal apparel and other winter products.

Below are several weather-driven demand calculations for example product categories comparing November 2016 to November 2015:

Category Impacts:

  • Women’s Boots: +17% Knoxville,  +12% Hartford, -19% Denver
  • Fleece+8% Philadelphia, +7% Atlanta, -13% Dallas
  • Heaters : +5% Cleveland, -39% Salt Lake City, -18% Omaha



As you can see from these analytics, favorability for seasonal categories in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Mid-West were more positive than those in the Plains or Rockies. This was no coincidence. Favorable weather conditions in one part of the country and unfavorable conditions in the other influenced how and what customers bought.

Luckily for retailers and restaurants, precipitation did not have a negative impact on traffic and sales. November 2016 was considerably drier than November 2015 which aided foot traffic.  Restaurants in particular saw a positive$278 million weather impact.

Want to learn more about weather impact and how you can deweatherize your business? Contact a Planalytics representative today!