Early shoppers go to Black Friday shopping, but online shopping dwindles

Early shoppers go to Black Friday shopping, but online shopping dwindles

Early risers ventured out hoping to find gifts under the Christmas tree before products sold out, fearing empty shelves, Black Friday 'early birds' head to U.S. stores CHICAGO Reuters - Many major U.S. retailers opened their doors to shoppers at 5 a.m. on Friday.

Black Friday was the day after the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday. In the past few years, retailers have been hosting 'doorbuster' discounts of 50% or more on everything from clothing and toys to TVs, prompting shoppers to line up for blocks outside stores and crowd into malls to search for deals.

But as online shopping has taken off, Black Friday crowds have dwindled, especially in 2020 when people are still unvaccinated and worried about COVID - 19.

There were early queues, with some shoppers worried that an ongoing supply chain logjam was on the site of the retailers. Com business autos- transportation containergeddon-supply crisis-drives walmart-rivals -- hire-their own-ships -- 2021 -- 10 -- 07 might prevent retailers from stocking sought-after items such as Hoverboard scooters, Nerf toys, Oculus Quest 2 headsets, AirPods Pro earbuds, and MacBook Air laptops.

Walmart Best Buy and Target this year did not require shoppers to wear masks, but some indoor malls kept existing mask requirements at www.reuters. Consumer research platform Attest showed that more than two-thirds of 1,000 people surveyed on Nov. 13 were comfortable shopping in-person despite the ongoing pandemic.

People are looking to get back to normal, said Rod Sides, Deloitte's U.S. retail leader. The birds that went into the store might get the worm, and the early online birds may get the worm. A Deloitte survey shows that people had already spent 80% -- 85% of their budgets before Black Friday, due to the fact that they were able to participate in the retail-distribution holiday-retail sales-consumer survey. The consultancy said two-fifths of respondents would line up at stores on Black Friday between midnight and 6 a.m.

Nivia Lopez, 26, from Bolingbrook, Illinois, has already scratched perfumes and makeup from Ulta Beauty off her Christmas list but is going to Victoria's Secret, Best Buy and Nordstrom on Black Friday. Lopez, who usually shopped on Thanksgiving before stores closed on the holiday, took advantage of early online deals.

As stores welcome holiday shoppers, some may be reevaluating their security measures after high-end stores in some U.S. cities were targeted by brazen smash-and- grab robberies. Com world us holidays-near-scrat- and- grab-robbers-hit-us luxury retailers -- 2021 -- 11 -- 23, where masked thieves stuff bags full of merchandise.

Consumer spending grew by a greater than expected 1.3% in October, according to data released Wednesday. Spending on big-ticket items like automobiles lifted the headline figure, but the data also showed broad-based spending increases on services like travel.

Online and brick and mortar retailing are just outside the store. The retailers Target, Macy's and Walmart allocated more floor space and workers to online pick-up stations and curbside parking on Black Friday.

Walmart, the world's biggest retailer, hired 150,000 workers for the holidays, many for these jobs. Target added more than 18,000 drive-up parking spaces, more than doubled the number compared to last year.

In November, curbside pickup increased 92% compared to 2019 according to the Adobe Digital Economy Index. 23% of online orders on Nov 23 were for curbside pickup.

Hayden Willis and Grace Lafortune, visiting Chicago for Thanksgiving, lined up early on Black Friday before flying home to Seattle despite doing some holiday shopping earlier in the week.

Lafortune, 22, who eyed gifts for Willis' mother and sisters at Bloomingdales, Anthropologie and Nordstrom Rack, said things are going to be readily available.

According to Adobe, out-of- stocks messages had already increased 8% compared to the prior week, as of Nov 23, according to out-of- stocks messages. Andy Halliwell, senior retail director at consultancy Publicis Sapient said there are already reported shortages of toys in a number of big sellers in North America and I think you'll see similar shortages in electronics.

Electronics, which had the highest out-of-stock levels due to a global chip shortage, had the highest out-of-stock levels, followed by personal care, home and garden, housekeeping and baby and toddler products, according to Adobe.

Instead of seeing eight piled-high boxes of TVs, you might see three or four stacks of TVs. NPD analyst Marshal Cohen said there might be fewer bicycles on the racks.

The increase in supply-chain costs has forced retailers to raise prices and cut back on discounts.

Apparel prices, for instance, went up 8.6% on a non-seasonally adjusted basis through the first 10 months of the year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That is the same as it was 0% in the first 10 months of 2020 and 4.7% in the first 10 months of 2019. The Consumer Price Index grew by 6.2% in the 12 months to October.