Despite some recent moves to cut back on promotions, the apparel sector stayed highly aggressive over the recent holiday period. In fact, promotional activity for the 2017 season was even more intense than the previous year. 

A look at vertical and multi-brand retailers confirms this. We analyzed daily email promotions from a cross-section of specialty retailers and department stores. Between November 16 and December 25, leading apparel retailers promoted large portions of their full assortments nearly every day. And the discounts were steep — averaging about 40%, starting the week before Thanksgiving and persisting all the way through Christmas. 

This Executive Insights Spotlight on Retail examines promotional activity across leading apparel retailers during the 2017 holiday shopping period (November and December), and points to several areas that retailers should consider to fine-tune promotional activity for 2018.