By Susan J. Levine and Elisa Foster
Do you know someone who works in consumer research or retail marketing? They’re probably in a frenzy right now because this week is the Super Bowl of consumer behavior research: Black Friday. For the past several weeks, we’ve been hearing and reading endless stories about who will shop, when they will shop and where they will shop on Black Friday.
However, this year’s Black Friday is special as more retailers are opening on Thanksgiving Day. With this increase of stores extending their holiday hours, everyone wants to know how this year’s shopping behaviors will impact how we celebrate holidays in the future. Is this the end of Thanksgiving as we know it? Journalists and bloggers are using stats to “prove” many, and often contradictory, points:
- Many writers are citing National Retail Federation research to predict consumer spending on Black Friday and Thanksgiving.
- Some advise us to ignore the NRF’s “annual fabrication of retail sales data.”
- Others point to class divisions among Thanksgiving shoppers.
- And a few note that the appeal of Black Friday shopping is starting to lose its luster.
Let’s continue the conversation! Please take our 2-second poll about YOUR consumer behavior and pass it along to your friends. Then, stay tuned for our follow-up post next week to find out what really happened.