Retailers push deals early as Black Friday loses focus… Millenials most likely to stand in line?
U.S. retailers push deals early as Black Friday loses focus
CHICAGO, Nov 23 (Reuters) – With sales on Black Friday slipping, U.S. retailers are offering pre-Thanksgiving deals even earlier than in recent years to draw shoppers as the day after no longer marks a spending peak at brick-and-mortar chains.
Black Friday, as the day after Thanksgiving is called, has traditionally started the holiday shopping season in the United States and was the day when retailers turned a profit, thus going from “being in the red” to “in the black.”
Many retailers have started opening their stores on Thanksgiving evening to boost customer traffic and sales.
But the number of Thanksgiving weekend shoppers fell by nearly a third to 102 million in 2015, from 147 million in 2012, according to the National Retail Federation. Moreover, early holiday promotions and online shopping hurt in-store spending by more than 6 percent last year, it said.
U.S. retailers, however, have redoubled efforts this year to boost sales with familiar tactics but greater intensity. Wal-Mart has already said it will increase inventory by more than half this year and make deals typically reserved for Black Friday available online early Thanksgiving morning.
Retail pricing and data analytics firm Market Track said an analysis of 15 top U.S. brick-and-mortar retailers and their Black Friday circular announcements online showed they were about three days earlier than last year.
Millennials are willing to stand in line longer than baby boomers on Black Friday
While you might expect tech-savvy young shoppers to sit around feverishly snapping up sale items from their mobile devices at home, many millennials will actually be headed to stores on Black Friday, and they’re willing to wait in line longer than baby boomers, according to the latest data.
Nearly half of shoppers “converging on a big-box or department store” on Black Friday are ages 34 and below, Foursquare said, and about 56% of that crowd are women. Foursquare is an app that uses location information for its consumer apps as well as its business and enterprise solutions.
Once at those stores, 31.1% of young millennials (ages 18 to 24) and 23% of older millennials (ages 25 to 34) will stay in line to make their purchase “no matter what,” according to data from tech company Salient Management, a retail-focused provider of data analytics tools. Only 20.8% of baby boomers will do the same.