Economy + Online Shopping=Fewer Holiday Catalogs

PORTLAND, Maine (November 22, 2012)--Holiday catalog circulation by retailers has actually dipped substantially because of a postage increase, a weak economy and more shoppers making purchases online.

Marketers say nearly a third fewer catalogs are mailed than four years ago.

L.L. Bean is among those that have scaled back page counts and become choosier about who gets its catalogs.

L.L. Bean's marketing chief Steve Fuller said he sees the trend accelerating, but he doesn't see catalogs going away.

He said catalogs and online sales are intertwined.

Catalogs serving as a tool to get customers' attention and to motivate them to make purchases, online or otherwise.

The precipitous drop in mailings follows a 23 percent average postage increase in 2007 for the category that includes standard-sized catalogs.

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