Did anybody notice the Christmas decorations and merchandise stocked in the major craft stores back in June? How about the intermingling of The Monster Mash and Jingle Bells on store soundtracks back in October?
If it seems to you like the holiday shopping season is coming around earlier and earlier, you are right. Retail trend watchers see a pattern of lengthening of the holiday merchandise sales periods by many retailers over the last few years.
What does this mean for us consumers?
- Black Friday is not the end all, be all, super deal day that it once was. As retailers lengthen their holiday sales pushes, they are offering blockbuster deals earlier to us consumers to capture our holiday gifts dollars out of the gate. Each retailer is trying to beat the other to the punch and, therefore, the creep of Christmas season into fall. According to Adobe Digital Index, the largest single day price drop on items will occur from the Sunday to Monday BEFORE Thanksgiving. Also, online prices will largely hit their rock bottom on Thanksgiving Day, not Black Friday or Cyber Monday.
Check out a this one of many similar headlines from many news outlets.
- Thanksgiving is no longer a “Most Businesses Give Employees a Work Break” Day. I personally loathe this trend, because we all need some time away from the work grind. For some people, this has been the only true day away that they get. More and more major retailers are jumping on the bandwagon of opening for at least part of Thanksgiving Day. I like a bargain as much as the next person, but not at the expense of someone else getting a day to rest.
- Setting and sticking to a holiday spending budget has become more important than ever. With the prolonged advertising frenzy, it is easy to get sucked into to starting to buy things in early November (not to miss out) and to continue all the way through December. Snagging bargain, after bargain, can mean broke, broke, broke come January.
With the rapid changes in the ways retailers market for the holidays, we are sure to see continuing movement away from single blockbuster bargain days (Black Friday) to extended super sales periods.