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Entries in black friday (27)

Monday
Nov262012

Retailers Enjoy Strong Start to Holiday Shopping Season

Sean Gallup/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Holiday sales got off to a strong start for retailers over the four-day Thanksgiving weekend, with an estimated $59.1 billion in sales -- up almost $7 billion from last year -- according to a survey by the National Retail Federation.

The retail trade association reports a record 247 million shoppers visited stores and websites over the holiday weekend, up from 226 million in 2011.  The average holiday shopper spent $423 this past weekend, up from $398 last year.

Turkeys were the obvious losers on Thanksgiving Day, but retailers were the winners.  The trade report says more than 35 million Americans visited retailers’ stores and websites on Thursday, up from 29 million last year.

And surprising news for those who thought that with more retailers open on Thanksgiving Day and more bargains online, Black Friday might diminish in importance.  The survey found that some 89 million shoppers hit the malls and the Internet on Black Friday, up from 86 million in 2011.  According to the survey, 28 percent of shoppers were at stores by midnight on Black Friday, compared to 24.4 percent last year.

More than one quarter of shoppers said they shopped online on Thanksgiving Day, and nearly half did so on Black Friday.  According to the survey, the average person spent $172.42 online over the holiday weekend.

The National Retail Federation says shoppers are more conscious of how they’re spending their money, with two out of three people opting to use cash or debit instead of credit cards.

Fifty-eight percent purchased clothing and clothing accessories over the weekend, up from 51.4 percent last year.  Almost 33 percent of shoppers bought gift cards over the weekend, up nearly 10 percentage points.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Nov252012

Why Cyber Monday May Not Matter Anymore

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Unlike previous years, Cyber Monday is not a better day to shop online or for electronics than Black Friday.

Cyber Monday was first widely publicized by Shop.org in 2005 to persuade shoppers to buy online, as people were still warming to e-commerce.

These days, many people are not only warming to shopping on their desktop computers, but also making purchases on their mobile devices. And early indications are that online shoppers aren't waiting for Monday.

According to payments company PayPal, on Thanksgiving Day alone, the company saw global mobile payment volume increase 173 percent compared to the holiday last year. The number of global customers who shopped through PayPal mobile increased 164 percent compared to Thanksgiving last year.

So, what are the categories that may have the best and worst deals?

Lindsay Sakraida, features director at deals site Dealnews, doesn't go so far as to say don't buy electronics on Cyber Monday, but she dispelled the myth that it is better to wait to buy electronics online rather than shop earlier on Thanksgiving weekend.

Sakraida said apparel and accessories may be better to buy on Cyber Monday rather than the preceding weekend.

Last year, the number of deals for apparel and accessories increased 27 percent on Cyber Monday compared to Black Friday, while there was an increase of 20 percent in Dealnews' Editors' Choice deals, what the editors deem are the best offers. A similar trend is also seen for home and garden deals, Sakraida said.

"Meanwhile, the volume of camera, laptop, tablet, and smartphone deals dropped after Black Friday, while TVs curiously saw a minor uptick," she wrote on Dealnews.com.

Some retailers, like Apple, are offering deals only on Black Friday.

Others have killer door busters for a very small number of products only in the first hours after a store opens, like Best Buy.

Like Black Friday, Cyber Monday may have a large volume of inventory on sale, but they might not have the steepest discounts.

The two times of the year that offer the steepest online discounts are January to February and August to September, when discounts average 46 percent, according to Tamra Feldman, vice president of marketing at personalized shopping deals site Shop It To Me.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Nov212012

The Top Black Friday and Thanksgiving Deals

Tom Pennington/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Black Friday deals are available to shoppers even earlier this year, and although there will be a large inventory of discounted merchandise, this week is not the best time of the year for the steepest discounts.

The two times of the year that offer the steepest online discounts are January to February and August to September, when discounts average 46 percent, according to Tamra Feldman, vice president of marketing at personalized shopping deals site Shop It To Me.

On the other hand, the average discount offered during Thanksgiving week is about 40 percent, according to the 150 online retailers in Shop It To Me's database.

However, shoppers have a larger inventory to choose from earlier on, so Feldman said consumers should still purchase items they love this week.  If you are hesitating to make a purchase, Feldman said, "If you're exceeding 40 percent, you can feel confident it's a great deal."

Like in previous years, many stores are offering free online shipping with no minimum purchase total this season.

Below are the best Black Friday deals offering discounts of 40 percent or more in-stores or online.  As always, it is best to check your local listings for store hours and deals:

  • Ann Taylor -- Ann Taylor has already begun offering 40 percent off full-price merchandise online with the code: THANKS.
  • Banana Republic -- Leading up to Black Friday, Banana Republic stores offer 40 percent off select styles.  On Black Friday, customers will get 40 percent off their entire purchase in the U.S. and Canada.
  • Bloomingdale's -- Save up to 50 percent off online and in-store purchases now through Sunday, Nov. 25.  In stores only, get 15.00 bMoney, Bloomingdale's reward points, for almost every $100 you spend.  Free shipping on any online order ends on Dec. 20.  Tuesday and Wednesday are also Bloomingdale's loyalist preview days online only, in which shoppers save more if they buy more.
  • Gap -- Gap's "Bright Friday" event is offering up to 60 percent off select items online through Saturday and in stores through Sunday.  On Friday until noon, men's and women's sweaters are $19, GapBody pajama sets are $19, and kids and baby graphic tees are $5.  On Saturday and Sunday, men's and women's tees are $10, GapBody pajama pants are $15 and kids and baby sweaters will be discounted 60 percent.
  • JCPenney -- JCPenney is offering its "only sale of the year" on Black Friday.  Over 1,100 JCpenney stores will open at 6 a.m. on Black Friday.  Black Friday deals will start on Thanksgiving day online.  Its Cyber Monday sale will start on Sunday with free shipping and deals unique to jcp.com.
  • Kohl's -- Department store Kohl's is offering 500 Early Bird Black Friday specials online from Wednesday to Friday.  Its in-store sales begin midnight on Friday.  All Kohl's shoppers will earn $15 Kohl's Cash for every $50 spent online and in stores, with no maximum.  Kohl's Cyber Monday and Cyber Week deals include 20 percent off and free shipping.
  • Kmart -- Kmart stores open at 6 a.m. on Thanksgiving.  Many stores will open at 5 a.m. on Black Friday.  Triple door buster online sales will begin at 5 a.m. and 7 p.m. on Thanksgiving, and at 4 a.m. on Friday.
  • Macy's -- Macy's is opening its doors at midnight on Thursday, offering deals like 1/2 ct. t.w. diamond studs in 14k White Gold for $199, 40 percent off all regular priced coffee makers, tea kettles and espresso makers, and a free pair of high-definition headphones with any $75 or more men's or women's fragrance purchase.  Customers can also view Black Friday specials on the Macy's mobile app.
  • Neiman Marcus -- Luxury retailer Neiman Marcus is offering free shipping with the code: NMFALL. Shoppers will save up to 40-60 percent off regular prices online and in-stores.
  • Old Navy -- The first customers to make a $40 purchase on Black Friday may get a New Super Mario Bros. U Game ($59.99 retail value) for the new Wii U home console.  From midnight to 4 a.m. on Black Friday, half-zip fleece for the family will sell for $5, Old Navy Famous Jeans for adults will sell for $15, and select styles of Adoraboots for women, girls and toddler girls will sell for $12.  Sherpa hoodies and coats will go on sale for $15 to $19 from 8 a.m. to noon.  On Saturday, graphic tees for the family will sell for $5.
  • Sears -- Sears' website is listing door busters each day of the weekend.  Sears has already hosted Turkey Tuesday, offering 5 to 15 percent off plus free shipping on orders of $49 or more.  Starting Wednesday, the company will have over 1,000 Black Friday door busters.
  • Sports Authority -- Sports Authority will have 100 door busters until 3 p.m. and for the first time, most locations will open at midnight on Black Friday.  The store is offering 50 percent off all balls, Razor E100, E125 or E150 electric scooters for $99 for a savings of $50, and a Chelsea Foosball table for $159.99 for a savings of $240, plus other deals.
  • Target -- Target will open its doors for Black Friday sales on Thursday at 9 p.m.  The company also offers holiday price matching from competitors.
  • Toys "R" Us -- Toys "R" Us will open its doors at 8 p.m. on Thursday, offering door buster deals while supplies last and a free bag of toys, including Lego and Crayola products, for the first 200 families.
  • Walmart -- Walmart's Black Friday two-day sale starts online on Thanksgiving Day and through Black Friday.  The company will open its doors at 8 p.m. at most stores.  Its Cyber Week starts online on Saturday, Nov. 24 through Sunday, Dec. 2, with free shipping on over 100,000 items.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Nov212012

Labor Board Calls Walmart Strike Decision 'Complex'

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has not yet decided whether to stop planned Black Friday protests in front of Walmart stores, calling the allegations that a union is conducting illegal picketing "complex."

Walmart, the largest employer in the country with 4,000 U.S. locations, had requested last Friday that the NLRB issue an injunction against planned protests outside Walmart stores that could take place on Black Friday, one of the busiest shopping days of the year.  But the NLRB Office of General Counsel said it will likely not be able to issue a decision before Thursday about the protests.

Walmart does not recognize an official workers' union and alleges that the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) union is organizing illegal picketing at its stores.

Labor advocates critical of Walmart say it does not pay workers enough and many part-time workers are unable to work more hours and earn additional income.

On Tuesday evening, the NLRB said it cannot issue a decision yet because the issue is "complex."  Since Monday, the labor board has investigated Walmart's allegations by speaking to the union, interviewing witnesses and sifting through documents provided by Walmart.

"The legal issues -- including questions about what constitutes picketing and whether the activity was aimed at gaining recognition for the union -- are complex," the labor board said.  "Also, there are many distinct factual circumstances at stores across the country to consider."

The NLRB said it expects to complete its investigation by Wednesday.

Since October, a group supported by the UFCW, Our Walmart, has threatened to protest against Walmart's 8 p.m. opening on Thanksgiving Day, and what the group says are unfair labor conditions.  The group has said protests could take place at 1,000 locations.

Based in Bentonville, Ark., Walmart employs 1.3 million associates, and the company says only a small minority of workers, less than 0.0003 percent, are expected to protest on Black Friday.

"In fact, many of our associates have urged us to do something about the UFCW's latest round of publicity stunts because they don't think it's right that a few associates that are being coerced by the UFCW are being portrayed by the media as representative of what it's like to work at Walmart," Walmart national media relations director Kory Lundberg said in a statement.

Lundberg said "most of the numbers of people the UFCW claims at their events aren't even Walmart workers.  They are union representatives and other union members."

Colby Harris, an Our Walmart member from Lancaster, Texas, fired back.

"Walmart is doing everything in its power to attempt to silence our voice.  But nothing -- not even this baseless unfair labor practice charge -- will stop us from speaking out," he said.

Walmart said more than one million associates will be working through the holiday weekend.

In defense of its labor practices, the company said it has 250,000 associates that have worked for the company for more than 10 years and it promoted 165,000 hourly associates last year.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Nov212012

Cyber Monday Deals You Can Get Right Now

ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- It’s not yet Black Friday but some stores are already offering Cyber Monday deals.

Cyber Monday is typically the first Monday after Thanksgiving, and it’s become well-known for the deep discounts offered to online shoppers that day.

This year, retailers aren’t waiting until Monday.  They’re making deals available right now.

Kohl’s, for example, is offering 500 “Early Bird” online specials.  They call it early Black Friday.

Why are retailers offering Cyber Monday now?  One of the reasons is the prevalence of mobile devices which enable shoppers to shop anywhere, at any time.  It’s estimated that 24 percent of shopping this holiday weekend will be done on mobile devices.

Here are some of the deals you can get right now:

  • Among the many deep discounts Kohl’s is offering starting on Wednesday, shoppers may get a Vivitar 12.1 mega pixel digital camera that’s regularly priced at $149.99 for $59.99.
  • On Amazon.com, sales are already available under a promotion the company’s calls Black Friday Deals Week.  Discounts are offered on electronics, computers and accessories, clothing, jewelry and a variety of other items.
  • NewEgg’s “Pre-Black Friday Frenzy” offers discounts on computer hardware and software, including an ASUS laptop computer for $249.
  • Target is offering a “Beat the Rush” sale.  Shoppers will get 25 percent off toys and 30 percent off kitchen and home items, among the specials offered.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Nov212012

Four Tips to Save Money on Black Friday

GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- With three daughters -- ages 4, 2 and 10 weeks -- Sarah Perillo, a blogger at CTWorkingMoms.com, and her husband Chris have their hands full and not a lot of time for holiday shopping.

So Joanna Stern, the technology editor at ABCNews.com, went to meet the Perillos in Simsbury, Conn., to show them how to outsmart stores and use technology to get great deals.

After Stern shared the following tips with the Perillos, the couple was able to cross a few items off the kids' wish list and put $390 back into their pockets.

1. Arm Yourself With Apps Like Decide

ABC News and the Perillos were surprised to learn that online prices fluctuate hourly.  The price of a Sony camera dropped three times -- almost $50 -- in the course of 12 hours.

At the store, the Perillos saw a digital camera they'd been considering.  Using the Decide app, they scanned the barcode and then searched through thousands of pieces of information to see whether they should buy it now or wait for a lower price.

The app's data told the Perillos not to buy the camera just yet, but it did give them the green light on a Samsung TV on sale for $648.

2. Click to Compare

A Tigger toy -- at the top of the girls' holiday list -- that Sarah Perillo had found at Target for $39.99 was marked down to $28.99.  Using an app called Red Laser, she scanned the bar code and found it for a lower price -- $21.  Because Target matches competitors' online prices this year, Sarah Perillo took it home for $21.

3. Walk Away From Your Cart

"If you put something in your cart and you walk away from it, it's kind of like playing hard to get," Stern said.  "Tell them [stores] you want it and walk away and then it might lower the price.  They'll send you an email saying, 'Actually we noticed you had this in your cart.  Here's a 10 percent discount."

To trick the computer, you may need to put your credit card number in the designated spot but don't go any further with the order.

4. Forgo the Black Friday Lines and Shop Wednesday

Stern said to avoid the Black Friday lines and shop on Wednesday.  This year, many retailers are already offering their Black Friday discounts.  The Samsung TV that the Perillos found on sale for $648 will be the same price Friday.  There were only four left when they looked.

Stern also suggested skipping the Black Friday stampede in the toy aisle on Black Friday and put off buying any toys.  Experts say they've found that toys are at their lowest prices online in the two weeks before Christmas.

According to Extrabux.com, the best days to buy products -- based on when consumers are most likely to shop online for categories of products -- are:

  • Sunday: Home appliances
  • Monday: Electronics
  • Tuesday: Travel
  • Wednesday: Jewelry
  • Thursday: Clothing

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Nov202012

Apple Black Friday Sale Announced

Apple(NEW YORK) -- It's not often that one can buy Apple products at a discount. But shoppers will have their chance this Friday, when the tech giant will offer Black Friday discounts on its popular gadgets, according to the Apple website.

Starting Friday, Nov. 23 at midnight PST, and lasting until 11:59 p.m. PST, customers will be able to order products online or shop at Apple stores, which will remain open for extended hours. Shoppers can also purchase products from the Apple store app on their iPhones, or scan products and pay in stores using EasyPay.

While the deals Apple typically offers are just 10 to 15 percent off, Mashable notes those price cuts could add up to as much as $100 off a MacBook Air or $60 off an iPad.

The company's holiday shopping announcement did not include a list of discounted items.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Nov202012

Strategize to Take Advantage of Staggered Black Friday Deals

Tom Pennington/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Despite all the hype and hustle, Black Friday really is the best bargain shopping day of the year, according to Edgar Dworsky, founder of ConsumerWorld.org, and an avid bargain hunter himself.

Retailers have long considered the day after Thanksgiving the official launch of their critical holiday shopping period, so they go all out to get shoppers excited and lure them in.

But this year, there's a twist, with stores sprinkling their so-called "door busters" across different time periods.

"Black Friday now starts on Thursday," explained Dworsky.  "If you don't read the circulars carefully, you may show up at the store either hours early or hours late."

For example, Walmart is offering some deals as early as 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. on Thursday.  Sears will let people in at 8 p.m. Thursday and again at 4 a.m. Friday.

Dworsky is a guy who actually spends his time studying these things, so here are his top tips for a golden deal on Black Friday:

1. Read the Ads in Advance

Dworsky suggests previewing the Black Friday sale circulars now at bfads.net.  You can search by category and see deals at all stores side by side at blackfriday.gottadeal.com.

2. Try for "Triple Plays"

To save even more, combine sale prices with coupons that give you a percentage-off or a set number of dollars off.  And finally, look for items that also have a cash back rebate.  You can often combine these offers because some are offered by the stores and others by the manufacturers.

3. Go Early

On Thanksgiving Day, many big chains will open early.  Plot your route from one to another, and if you are hoping to score at more than one, dispatch different family members to different stores.  Here are some of the early openings:

  • Best Buy: Midnight Thursday
  • Kohl's: Midnight Thursday
  • Kmart: 8 p.m. Thursday
  • Macy's: Midnight Thursday
  • Sears: 8 p.m. Thursday
  • Target: 9 p.m. Thursday
  • Toys "R" Us: 8 p.m. Thursday
  • Walmart: 8 p.m. Thursday

4. Go Even Earlier

Some stores may make their Black Friday deals available to "members" days early.  For example, Dworsky says Sears is letting its reward club members buy some door busters starting on Sunday, Nov. 18.  You may also be able to order some Black Friday sale items online on Thanksgiving Day or extra early Friday at JC Penney, Kohl's and other department stores.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Nov182012

Black Friday: Retailers, Shoppers Preparing for Big Day

ABC News(NEW YORK) -- Retailers are preparing for a stampede of shoppers on Black Friday, some of whom have already begun camping outside of stores, eager to get the best deals first.

Nearly one in four Americans, 86 million total, hit the stores on Black Friday last year, according to the National Retail Federation.

At one retailer, ABC News witnessed a mock Black Friday scenario, where a steady line of people banged their shopping carts through the door.

There’s good reason for the training. Some shoppers in Wisconsin are already camped out, ready to be the first people through the door when the Black Friday sales begin.

“Our time is almost getting paid back just by the savings,” one shopper said.

But not everyone is cheerful about the big day. Employees of some big box stores are unhappy their stores are opening on a Thursday for shopping, causing them to miss spending Thanksgiving with their families.

“We’re just demanding respect,” said Rosetta Brown, a Wal-Mart employee.

Target announced on Monday that it is opening some stores on Thanksgiving at 9 p.m. for its Black Friday sale, which in the past began the day after Thanksgiving.

Walmart will be opening its doors at 8 p.m. Sears will also open at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving, moved up from 4 a.m. on Black Friday last year. Kmart will be open Thanksgiving Day 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., then it will close and reopen 8 p.m. to 3 a.m. Macy’s, Kohl’s and Best Buy open at midnight.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Feb172012

Presidents Day 2012 Sales Better Than Black Friday?

Tom Pennington/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Although many Americans are still recovering from the busy holiday shopping season that included record Black Friday sales, Presidents Day discounts are expected to be even deeper.

Shop It To Me, a personalized online sales shopper, found that Presidents Day sales averaged 46.7 percent off apparel, shoes and accessories, outpacing those of Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving), which averaged up to 42.1 percent off, and Cyber Monday (three days later), which saw discounts of 41.1 percent.

Presidents Day ranks second just behind Labor Day as the best holiday to grab the steepest online apparel sales, said the San Francisco based company. Like Black Friday, retailers are launching Presidents Day online sales Friday before the actual holiday, said Tamra Feldman, Shop It To Me’s vice president of marketing.

“So people with downtime will find great sales online,” she said, adding that shoppers might want to act quickly. “I do think the best items won’t last long or many sizes will be gone.”

Shop It To Me compiled descriptions of Presidents Day sales and promotions from 40 retailers.  Among Feldman’s favorites are those of J. Crew, which is offering a 20 percent discount off online orders of $150 or more, and Nordstrom, which is offering a 40 percent clearance on shoes, with free shipping and returns.

Average holiday discounts, based on Shop It To Me’s 2011 data:

1. Labor Day: 48.4 percent off
2. Presidents Day: 46.7 percent off
3. Columbus Day: 45.2 percent off
4. New Year’s Day: 44.2 percent off
5. Independence Day: 43.5 percent off
6. Memorial Day: 42 percent off

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio