More People Planning To Shop Over Thanksgiving Weekend

Major Retailers Close, But Offer Online Deals To Draw In Consumers

Gunnar Rathbun/Invision

More big retailers are closed for Thanksgiving, but a national retail group is projecting that two million more people than last year are planning to shop this holiday weekend.

Ana Serafin Smith, senior director of media relations for the National Retail Federation, said roughly 137 million people are either considering or planning to shop this weekend based on a survey of 7,206 consumers earlier this month. She said about 21 percent of respondents are thinking about cashing in on deals on Thanksgiving day despite the closure of more than 50 major retailers.

“But, it’s very different now compared to the past is that although those stores are closed their websites are open so a lot of these retailers … their websites will be running Thanksgiving day promotions,” she said. “So, you can still shop at your favorite retail store … but you can do it from the comfort of your sofa right after you enjoyed a delicious Thanksgiving meal.”

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The majority of shoppers surveyed by the National Retail Federation are planning to take advantage of deals on Black Friday.

“Seventy-four percent of shoppers are going to be shopping on Black Friday and then followed by 47 percent are heading to stores on Saturday,” she said, “and then, of which that particular number, 24 percent are actually going in to support Small Business Saturday.”

She said that’s about a two percent increase in shoppers who planned to support small businesses last year. Last year, shoppers shattered expectations when 151 million people said they shopped online or in stores over Thanksgiving weekend, according to figures from NRF.

As for Cyber Monday, about 36 percent of those surveyed are planning to shop for deals online Monday. Serafin Smith said some may be keeping tabs on ads and promotions before the end of the weekend.

“Cyber Monday is also evolving like how we’ve seen with Black Friday. Black Friday sales started as early as Nov. 1, and now we’re seeing Cyber Monday sales starting as early as on Black Friday,” she said. “So, this is part of these retailers reacting to modern-day consumers and how they’re shopping.”

About 2 percent more people who were surveyed say they’re considering or planning to shop online for Cyber Monday.