Posts tagged: Black Friday
With Thanksgiving almost here, it's pertinent to think about the consumer reaction to plans by big retailers to open their doors one day before Black Friday.
We found that that Change.org has acted like a gatekeeper, providing links to 63 different no-shop petitions opposing Thanksgiving shopping.
One link that reportedly gathers all those petitions is here.
Several Spokane retailers also made sure they told their customers they're not into business that much; they've all said they won't open until Friday. They're mentioned in this earlier Spokesman.com story.
A recent online blog noted that consumers this year are especially trying to change the practice by stores not normally considered big-box. More petitions this year, it noted, target more niche stories like office supply retailer, Staples. As a petition-starter puts it: “Do they honestly think people are going to be standing outside on Thanksgiving evening for bulk paper and pencils?”
So the retail season has a little drama developing this week.
It's the increasing concern by some parts of the business world that stores that open on Thanksgiving are turning into Scrooge, forcing employees to give up one of the entitled holidays most Americans enjoy.
To continue the literary analogy, the players taking the role of Bob Cratchit are employees from Target and Walmart.
Here is a summary of the two similar efforts gaining steam as the Thanksgiving drama unfolds:
Some Walmart workers across the country are considering either striking or takingother actions during Thanksgiving week.
Those workers are predicting as many as 1,000 protests at Walmart stores leading up to Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday. Workers announced upcoming strikes and protests in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, Milwaukee, Washington, D.C., as well as workers' plans to walk off the job in Oklahoma, Mississippi, Louisiana and Minnesota.
The Walmart concern goes beyond early shopping. Reports say concerned Walmart workers are protesting poor working conditions, higher benefits costs, efforts to block people of color, and retaliation against workers advocating for changes in these areas. Some also have said the “Black Thanksgiving” early shopping start before Black Friday is disruptive for many families wishing to enjoy the holiday with relatives.
Then there's the ongoing effort by workers to urge Target to change plans to open at 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving eve.
One Target employee, Casey St. Clair, recently delivered more than 350,000 signatures from her Change.org petition to the company's headquarters in Minneapolis. Along with several local Target customers and community faith leaders, St. Clair brought the signatures to the office of Target President & CEO Gregg Steinhafel in several boxes.
Yes, we favor small business and local small shopping over chain shopping.
But since that's not everyone's choice, we'll offer up an infographic produced by Mint that alleges to be the Commandments of Black Friday.
Small businesses who are trying to gain advantages during the coming holiday season are being urged to reate a party atmosphere, especially during the Black Friday weekend.
A number of retail experts are making their suggestions known, advising small business owners to think creative, think friendly, think social media this coming season.
The usual suggestions are back: Offer treats your store would not normally offer customers, such as cookies, hot cider or even a cup of cocoa. Offer free wrapping, or make extra efforts to find an item a customer can't find in one's own store.
Since social is the buzz term, advisers also say use Facebook and Twitter to connect to customers with updates on merchandise, especially including unique items and great deals.
Laurie Brown, considered a “customer service expert,” urges small businesses to really push their message to their community.
Brown says Small Business Saturday — a sponsored event that some retailers should become an ongoing effort for the day after Black Friday — is an opportunity to shine, and in doing so making an impression and hopefully a customer, in the local community, for life.
Shoppers jammed parking lots from Wandemere to Spokane Valley to North Idaho this morning, ignoring snowy roads and cold temperatures to buy 46-inch televisions and 700-count sheets.
At the Northpointe shopping Center, Best Buy Manager Keat Shankle estimated as many as 2,000 shoppers had been through the store by 6:20 a.m. A sub-$200 laptop was a big attraction, but discounted Nook e-book readers were also selling well, he said.
Sally Morden emerged from the store with an X-Box and DVDs. She was headed to Target, where husband Duane was still 30 minutes deep in the checkout line.
Asked how much more shopping they had to do, Morden displayed a notebook with three pages of entries. The print was small.
Mallory Arana and her husband, Aristo, left the Sears at the Silver Lake Mall with a full shopping bag this morning. They found slippers for $3.99, blankets for $2 and an $8.99 sweater, normally priced around $60.
The Coeur d’Alene couple, who were shopping for family members, were headed next to Macy’s and Target. Mallory Arana said she’s not an online shopper. After Thanksgiving dinner, they sat down and went through the newspaper inserts to find the best deals.
Black Friday is two weeks away. It’s one sure date when otherwise cautious shoppers turn into crazed and dedicated sales-hounds.
We’re looking to find four to five different readers who would take part in a Black Friday study. We want to talk with only those shoppers who will be hunting online for Black Friday sales; if avoiding the street crowds is your thing and hunting online for deals is your goal, you are the person we’re looking for.
We can’t offer compensation. We would intend to talk with you before and after your Black Friday shopping session.
At some point we would possibly use your name in a story published at spokesman.com and in print.
You can post your interest here in the Comments. Or e-mail tomsATspokesman.com. (use @ and not AT)