Over the last few years, the idea of Black Friday shopping has drastically changed. In earlier years, people would have been waiting outside of stores like Best Buy to get the best deals on electronics a few days in advance. Now, some stores are opening a day early on Thanksgiving rather than on Black Friday.
There has been a lot of controversy over Black Friday sales, including the safety risk and the ethicality of the company. Some people believe that it is wrong to not only encourage families to go shopping on Thanksgiving Day rather than spend time at home with their families, but also having employees work during holidays. This year, 13 stores have made the commitment to stay closed, some of which include Costco, Neiman Marcus, and Nordstrom. On the other hand, some stores like Target, Best Buy, and Walmart have decided to start their sales as early as 5:00 PM on Thanksgiving Day. I believe that the decision to either stay open or closed on major holidays such as Thanksgiving say a lot about a company and their beliefs. Although Black Friday is a convenient time and way to get a majority of the holiday shopping done, I do think that some companies have taken it too far. I am interested to see if the extended Black Friday hours will actually increase in-store sales. As everything becomes more and more convenient to go online, I believe that the Black Friday fad will eventually fade out in the next five years. In a recent AdWeek article, Hanna Masaryk says “a recent study from The National Retail Federation projected that the average person will do 44 percent of his or her holiday shopping online this year—another way to avoid the mad rush on Black Friday.”
Do you think that by starting Black Friday sales early negatively affect the image of a company? Will you be participating in early Black Friday sales? Why or why not?