According to an article last week in The New York Times: “Sales at the nation’s largest retailers fell off a cliff in October, casting fresh doubt on the survival of some chains and signaling that this will probably be the weakest Christmas shopping season in decades.” Sales at luxury stores like Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue were off as well as mainstream retailers like The Gap while deep discounters like Walmart posted gains.
For years, the day after Thanksgiving has been termed Black Friday because it’s one of the busiest (and most profitable) shopping days of the year. That’s how the day got its name. Merchants have historically relied on Black Friday to move out of the red and into the black, hence showing a profit. And dedicated holiday shoppers have taken full advantage of the bargains. If you've never braved the crowds before, this might be the year that the stores make you an offer you can't refuse.
Because of the state of the economy, some retailers are having Black Friday sales early. While we don’t wish our nation's struggling retailers ill, it is our mission here at Team CHEAPIOSITY to help consumers. Retailer's losses can be your gain, and your participation in the enterprise can be the gift that keeps on giving.
Kmart just started offering a rotating array of deeply discounted specials and will continue to do so through November 23. Each week, 15 different products, including many home electronics, will be featured in store circulars, available in print and on the company’s Web site.
Deep discounting is going on at Walmart, too. The company just announced that it’s be rolling back prices on thousands of items, from food and board games to coffeemakers and toys, every week for the next seven weeks as part of a initiative called Operation Main Street. The rollbacks, according to Wal-Mart, amount to $200 million in additional savings for consumers.
On November 16, 2008, Sears is having Friends and Family VIP Night. Discounts abound both in store and on line. For details, go to: http://www.sears.com/shc/s/dap_10153_12605_DAP_Sears+VIP?SID=IOx20080312x00001
In the meantime, don’t wait until the last minute to learn about Black Friday blockbusters at other stores. You can often check out many of the deals in advance at Web sites such as: http://www.bfads.net/, http://www.black-friday.net/, http://www.theblackfriday.com/, http://www.tgiblackfriday.com/, and http://www.blackfriday.info/.
Just remember our motto: No matter how deeply discounted, it's not a bargain if you don't really need it. Be careful out there.