Thanksgiving in America may be about to lose its popularity as one of the busiest shopping days of the year, as retail experts agree that it's not worth to set-up shop during this holiday.
After dozens of retail stores have closed shop for the holiday, many US families have more reason to stay at home and enjoy Thanksgiving as industry experts are now looking at Black Friday- the post-Thanksgiving shopping extravaganza - becoming the focal point of consumer activity beginning this year.
RetailNext, a leading retail store data analytics firm, reports that based on market and consumer behavioral data as well as store traffic patterns reports that five of the busiest days for shopping did not include Thanksgiving. Four of those days fall in December (17, 23, 10 and 26) with Black Friday sales placing second in rank. December 17, which falls on a Saturday, is expected to have the busiest shopping activity thanks to the Christmas holidays.
"As retailers have continued the trend to open more stores on Thanksgiving Day, it has pilfered away both sales and traffic from Black Friday, and with Christmas falling on a Sunday, most shoppers will want to cut short their shopping early on Saturday, December 24, leaving the day before, Friday, as retail's biggest opportunity for sales," says Shelley Kohan, RetailNext 's vice president for retail consulting.
It may just turn out to be a blessing in disguise after all for families wanting to spend more time with friends and loved ones during the holiday, with Thanksgiving Day 2016 may turn out to be a holiday after all, literally.
According to Business Insider, more US retailers have opted to close for Thanksgiving Day 2016, among them the Mall of America, Costco, Nordstrom, Barnes and Noble, Marshalls and TJ Maxx. Most of the stores that will open on Thanksgiving have shortened hours of business to prepare for the Black Friday madness.
One of the major mall operators in the US, CBL and Associates, according to CNBC, has announced a month ago that 73 of its commercial malls around the nation will be closed for Thanksgiving.
Industry experts also believe that retail store management is also looking into leveraging this Thanksgiving holiday as a way to boost sales for Black Friday 2016, after statistics showed there was a significant drop in sales last year. ShopperTrak reported an 11.9 percent drop in sales during the 2015 Black Friday compared to 2014.
Thanksgiving 2015, according to the same report from the global consumer and retail analytics firm, also suffered a 12.5 percent drop in sales compared to 2014. These figures, experts conclude, may have also contributed to the decision to strategize in promoting the lull in shopping activities for Thanksgiving 2016 and buildup the momentum for Black Friday to allow more shoppers to visit stores and increase consumer spending.
All stores and retail chains are expected to resume normal operations on Black Friday, with many opening their doors at the very first hour of Friday to welcome enthusiastic shoppers.