Monday, March 19, 2018

Southlake Consumer Sales Strong in 2017

Southlake consumer sales spending ends 2017 with positive gains.

Spending at Southlake retailers and restaurants rose in 2017, with a 13.5% increase in spending versus 2016.  Consumers spent almost $650 million in Southlake with about 60% of those sales coming from visitors.

“Southlake is a strong regional draw and what we tend to see is that for centers like Southlake Town Square, about 75% of sales can be attributed to either day or overnight visitors,” says Alison Ortowski, Assistant City Manager / Director of Economic Development and Tourism.

As a regional center, the bulk of visitors to Southlake come either daily for work purposes or they visit from nearby cities to enjoy the variety of shopping and dining options around town.  “Visitors spend the most money at our restaurants followed by a close second to retail spending.  What may surprise some, though, is that a lot of visitors also come here for healthcare, and we’ve seen that increase in the past year as well,” says Ortowski. (Read more about Southlake’s thriving healthcare industry here)

While Southlake tends to see the bulk of its visitors coming from the DFW Metroplex and from around Texas, what people may not realize is that Southlake also has a healthy dose of visitors from other states and even other countries.  An estimated almost 12,000 international visitors to Southlake spent just under $3.6 million in purchases at local stores and restaurants, a 25% increase in spending when compared to prior year.

When asked about the driver behind this increase, Southlake Senior Marketing Manager Jill Lind says, “Our international visitor market benefits from our close proximity to DFW International Airport and the allure of our strong mix of shopping and dining options.  We are an ideal place to spend some time during a long layover.  Our business traveler market is also very strong in this segment.  We often see business travelers choose Southlake for area business trips because of our quality accommodations, offerings, and location.”  International visitors come most often from as close as Canada and as far as China and Australia and unlike domestic visitors, they tend to spend most of their money on electronics and lodging.

“Consumer spending is an important piece of our economic puzzle.  The health of Southlake’s economy is linked to the strength of the businesses, retailers, and restaurants that make up our business community and sales data is one indicator that we routinely monitor.  We are gratified to see that sales are strong and will continue to monitor this data point to ensure we understand sales trends and how they may impact Southlake so that we can make proactive decisions based on what we see,” notes Ortowski.

Southlake receives consumer sales data on a quarterly basis.  Keep an eye out for a report on 2018 Q1 this spring.

The City of Southlake’s Tourism Office estimates are based on and extrapolated from aggregate depersonalized card usage data provided by VisaVue® Travel for the period of January 1, 2017, through December 31, 2017, and incorporates data from other independent research sources.

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