So, Thanksgiving has passed, and Black Friday too. How was it for you? Did you get involved in the craziness, or did you batten down the hatches and wait for it to go away?
If the latter applies to you, it seems that you’re not alone. According to preliminary survey results from the National Retail Federation, online and in store sales were estimated to have fallen 11% to $50.bn – that’s down from $57.4bn last year.
That’s despite some of the best discounts being made available online as well as in store; retailers failed to attract to their websites even those people that didn’t have the stomach for the madness in the malls.
Could it be that the luster of those Black Friday deals has finally lost its shine? Or could it be that people are still feeling the pinch post-recession, and impulse buys are just too much of a luxury right now? Another train of thought is that people are feeling slightly better off, and rather than scrabbling around for bargains are able to buy items in their own time, even if it means paying a few dollars more.
We’ll get more of an idea as to the current mind-set of the nation’s consumers today, as Cyber Monday takes hold.
If you feel like you’ve got a case of promotion sickness, with all the deals and the hype over the long weekend, you’d better be prepared for more. Your inbox was probably full of Cyber Monday offers long before you even woke up this morning, and some of the things you may have been after could already be out of stock. It’s going to be another busy day…
That said, the number of people that plan to shop online on Cyber Monday is expected to be down from last year – 127 million from 131 million. That could be due to the fact that there is no apparent rush to get the deals today. In many cases, the discount prices will be around for days – even weeks – to come. The CEO of the National Retail Federation, Matthew Shay says that “every day is going to be Black Friday, every minute is going to be Cyber Monday.”
We’ll know in the coming days whether Cyber Monday has again topped the Black Friday spending. With fewer things vying for your attention today as opposed to last Friday – we’re talking family, food, drink, games – the conditions may be more conducive to a bit of online shopping. Maybe you’ve gone back to work in a more relaxed frame of mind, and don’t mind whiling away half an hour looking for a deal or two.
But maybe Shay has the right idea – maybe the notion of one or two major shopping days is antiquated, and with deals available across the long weekend, next year will see a dispersion of spend in that time.