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For retailers, holiday shopping was strong. But the way we shop is changing.

A UPS worker sorts packages to be loaded onto a delivery truck at the UPS sort facility in South San Francisco, California.

A UPS worker sorts packages to be loaded onto a delivery truck at the UPS sort facility in South San Francisco, California. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

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The 2019 shopping season looks like it was a strong one. According to one early consumer survey, spending was up 3.4 % this year — and online shopping was up over 18 % compared to 2018. But how did that look from the retailer side of the checkout counter?

Throughout the holiday shopping season, we’ve been following three different business owners to see how their most important shopping season has been going. We called them up one final time in the first week of January to see how it all went down. Here’s what they said.

Patty Delgado, Hija de tu Madre

Patty Delgado (left) with her father, Fancisco Delgado. (Courtesy of Patty Delgado).

Patty Delgado runs Hija de tu Madre, a Latina-focused e-commerce business based in Los Angeles, California.

“When we’re mailing out things in such high volumes, orders go missing, packages go missing. But we’ve survived. And I think that we’re coming off this really awesome high of having a strong fourth quarter.”

 

Gary Merriman, Fish Hawk

(Courtesy of Gary Merriman)

Gary Merriman opened the Fish Hawk, an Atlanta fly fishing store, nearly 46 years ago.

“We had good sales. I noticed a little bit of a difference this year. We didn’t have as many of the last-minute shoppers as we normally get.”

Kristin Thalheimer Bingham, Dean’s Sweets

Kristin Thalheimer Bingham and husband Dean, run Dean’s Sweets in Portland, Maine.

Kristin Thalheimer Bingham (Credit: Melissa Mullen)

“We’re definitely noticing that we’re getting more online orders. And every year that ticks up a little bit, and just a few fewer walk-in customers.”

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