For years to many of us, the day after Thanksgiving otherwise known as “Black Friday” has been the unofficial start of the holiday shopping season. Consumers search ads sent by retailers to find the best deals, plan the big day in advance in hopes to score the season’s hottest items. We’ve even waited in line to get into stores on Thanksgiving Day. In recent years, some retailers have pushed the start of holiday shopping a bit earlier, but have we ever seen it start THIS early?
Today marks the second day of Amazon’s Prime Days for 2020 which has been held annually since 2015 in July. The company postponed their biggest shopping days this year after the coronavirus generated unprecedented strain on its warehouses along with their shipping and logistics networks. However, the timing of the new dates has kicked off the holiday shopping season for 2020. Other major retailers have decided to compete with Amazon Prime Days including Target and Walmart. Traditionally, retail stores like Target, Walmart, Best Buy and Macy’s offer their biggest sales for Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Prime Days has made them offer sales early as well.
With coronavirus still spreading and the uncertainty of the virus, stores are cancelling Thanksgiving Day sales and not opening their stores on the Thanksgiving holiday this season. Black Friday sales will still occur; however, retailers are directing consumers to shop online to avoid crowds. To everyone that has had the experience to go shopping on Black Friday, you know how hard it would be to social distance and remain six feet apart. Some consumers will still wake up in the wee hours of the night to get those hot deals while others will be doing their shopping from the comfort of their homes, more so than in previous years.
Another question arises this holiday season, will consumers be spending as much as they have in the previous years? While online shopping may be on the rise, for each holiday, at least one-third of consumers intend to spend less than they did in 2019. Of the reasons why they have decided to spend less, the reason topping the charts at 66% is that they will be celebrating on a smaller scale due to the pandemic. Other reasons include being more conscious of spending, avoiding in-store shopping, change in job situation and having to use savings during the pandemic.
As a consumer, whether you have decided to spend more or less, shop online or in-stores, please do it safely and stay healthy this holiday season.