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'In-Store' Holiday Shopping Is Back, Retailers Say

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - You've heard the phrase, "Shop local."

Many North Texans are heeding that advice in advance of the holiday shopping season.

Browsing the aisles, comparing prices, the art of in-person shopping appears to be back.

"I have seen a tremendous increase in people shopping local stores," said Candace Williams, owner of The Toy Maven in North Dallas.

And that's after a holiday season that was more Scrooge than Santa.

"Brick and mortar obviously suffered a lot during COVID-19: keeping people employed, keeping the doors open, because their sales were way down," said financial advisor Dale McCarty.

The National Retail Federation said many households will shift back to in-store shopping and a more traditional holiday shopping experience.

Thanks to supply chain and shipping issues, store owners said they believe it comes down to what's on the shelves right now.

"I think it has to do with people wanting to walk into a business and take what they want home with them and know that they have it in hand," said Michael Bracken, Co-President of Nicholson-Hardie in Dallas.

"I've heard the stories about, 'It's in someone's virtual cart. It's in their virtual cart. It's in their virtual cart,' and then it's not," said Williams.

Retailers have also doubled their efforts to make in-person shopping safe and convenient through trends like curbside pickup, which experts say nearly a quarter of shoppers will use this holiday season.

But they say the convenience will come at a cost. With high demand and less product, expect fewer sales and higher prices.

"So just kind of go into the holiday season understanding that you're going to get a little bit less for what you're paying for and so you're not disappointed," said McCarty.

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