2011 Black Friday Sales Set New Record

For some, Black Friday is a nightmare, but for dedicated shoppers, it’s the perfect day to score deals and officially begin Christmas shopping.

While many sleep in after Thanksgiving festivities, Black Friday shoppers wake up in the early hours and rush to malls, chains, and independent retailers for a full day of shopping. Despite the economy, Black Friday prevailed this year. According to msnbc.com, Black Friday sales for 2011 increased as 226 million people shopped online and in stores.

Shoppers were able to start shopping even earlier than most years when stores open at 5 or 6 a.m. For the first time, several major retailers including Target, Walmart and Best Buy opened doors at midnight on Black Friday. The National Retail Federation said about 25 percent of Black Friday shoppers went to stores at midnight.

“I would say that means we will have to be on the look-out for a new tradition, and that is and more stores will be opening on Thanksgiving night next year,” said Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst at the NPD Group.

Many stores also offered layaway options for the first time. Rather than paying all at once, consumers can reserve an item and pay for it over time in installments.

While heading to stores in the early morning offers a typical Black Friday experience, many consumers stayed home and shopped online instead. According to a study by IBM Corp., online sales on Black Friday this year increased by 20 percent compared to 2010.

A large number of online purchases came from mobile devices including smartphones and tablets. IBM said 9.8 percent of online purchases came from a mobile device, compared to 6.6 percent last year.

A total of $52.4 billion was spent over the four-day Thanksgiving weekend, said CNNMoney.

Hitting the stores among hundreds of other shoppers can be a bit overwhelming, but following these tips can help you keep your cool while snagging next year’s best deals.

  1. If shopping with someone else, send them to wait in the cashier line right away. By the time you find your purchases, your fellow shopper will be near the front of the line. This will save a lot of time that is often wasted waiting in line to make a purchase.
  2. Have an idea of what you want to buy before going shopping on Black Friday. Because stores are so hectic on Black Friday, it can be overwhelming to maneuver around the store and decide what you want to purchase. Making a list of items you would like to buy can help you focus on what exactly needs to be purchased.
  3. Look out for TV, radio and print ads the weeks before Black Friday. Many stores share promotions through their advertisements. Such advertisements help you know what stores will have the best deals.
  4. Shopping can take up a lot of energy, especially on Black Friday when you spend hours searching for and making purchases. To keep your energy up all day, bring along some snacks to eat while shopping.
  5. Since you will be walking around all day, wear comfortable shoes. It can also be helpful to wear layers so you can add or remove articles of clothing throughout the day.

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Article by Erin Kennedy for Phoenix Fashion Week

“The Resource For All Things Fashionable”


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