Survey results: Can Thanksgiving be the new Black Friday?
Everyone working in retail knows how important Black Friday can be for the year's balance sheets. This year, however, Thanksgiving Day will gain added importance as Macy's, Target and other stores extend their sales and open hours into Thursday evening. (Wal-Mart will even start discounting items a week ahead of time.)
So how eager are consumers to begin pouncing on pre-Black Friday sales? Retail Dive decided to pose the question to 700 of the people whose pocketbooks will matter on Nov. 28. Using Google Consumer Surveys, we asked the question that store managers will ponder next week: "Would you be willing to shop at a store you like on Thanksgiving Day if it were open and offering big deals that are normally reserved for Black Friday?"
So are you ready to see the results?
Overall, 76% of the consumers we heard from responded negatively, with only 24% replying the yes, they would be interested in grabbing some Black Friday deals a day early.
Answers varied a bit by age, but not widely by gender. Men were slightly more averse to heading out to stores on Thanksgiving Day than women. 25% of female respondents said that they would be willing to shop on Thursday if big deals were being offered. Meanwhile, only 22.9% of male consumers surveyed indicated that they would be willing to hit stores early.
Things got a little more interesting, however, when we broke the responses down by age. Survey-takers in the 35-44 age range turned out to be most inclined to shop on Thanksgiving Day with a 30% "Yes" response rate. That result contrasted starkly with the 87.7% "No" rate we saw with consumers 65 and older.
By community, city dwellers appeared more likely than other consumers to visit Thanksgiving Day sales, especially when compared to respondents in rural locations. In fact, 25.4% of urban respondents replied "Yes," while only 18.8% of those in rural areas expressed willingness to visit stores on Thursday.
Are you surprised? Adobe recently released a report predicting that Thanksgiving will overtake Black Friday as the country's more popular online shopping day within the next five years. If brick-and-mortar stores want to be competitive options for holiday shoppers in 2018, they may to need to hit the ground running now—whether deal-seekers come or not.
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