Somber Aftermath: 2012 Black Friday Wrap-Up

24 Nov

It’s time to wrap up the series on Black Friday. The 2012 Black Friday event is now a thing of the past. For all the build-up and hype the “official” kickoff to the holiday shopping season is over. What happens now is the number crunching of what impact was felt not only over all in the economy but just how much difference, positive or negative, it made to be open on Thanksgiving.

Some reports so far seem to indicate the early openings may not have resulted in more sales overall. Instead it spread out sales which would have been made at the previously set openings of midnight. From a report on KHOU in Houston, Texas: [1]

“I was expecting it to be more crowded,” Simon said. “Parking was really easy to find. I’ve been looking at my friends’ Facebook statuses and everyone’s been saying it’s pretty empty.”

This can be a bad thing for retailers. The time and effort to get people into the stores early on Thanksgiving night did not translate into the same people continuing to shop through the rest of the morning on Black Friday. There was extra incentive for customers to keep going when they were already exhausted and got what they wanted.  Then factor in the stores to pay for staff to be there and running on Thursday night. Couple those factors in with tired and unhappy employees who were torn away from their families all in the name of profit and  the logical end result a loss for the extra hours being open. At best, financially it is a break even proposal most retailers, no matter how they and their associations will try to spin it.

And there was always the good news of happy shoppers treating each other with joy and happiness. Well maybe not. Reports of gang fights [2], Shootings [3] and Customers pepper spraying authorities [4] were among those from happy customers out and about on Thursday and Friday. Even Victoria’s Secret shoppers were acting like they had ants in their pants. [5] Turns out it they were just eager to get a leg up on each other on a deal for yoga pants. Yes, yoga pants.

One bright note to the whole Thanksgiving Day shopping weekend, is the event known as Small Business Saturday. This one is actually one to get out and support. It encourages customers to spend their time and money with local small businesses on Saturday, November 24. Doing so not only helps “neighbors” who’s lively hood is their own small company, it also helps the local economy and local jobs. If the saying is all politics is local, then all economies are local too and helping them out is American as turkey on Thanksgiving. [6]

References –

  1. Friday shoppers benefit after stores open early on Thursday – KHOU 11
  2. Fight at Woodland Mall – Fox 17
  3. Two People Shot in Fight Over Wal Mart Parking Space – WCTV
  4. Disturbance leads to scare at Westroads Mall – KETV 7
  5. Rush at Victoria’s Secret Pink at Oak Park Mall in Overland Park, Kan. – KSHB 41
  6. Small Business Saturday –

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