Why more of your favorite stores are closing on Thanksgiving
As retailers have pushed Black Friday door-buster deals earlier each year, a small but growing number of companies has gone in the other direction.
Clothing retailer H&M is the latest company to shun the ever-earlier sales trend by announcing that it will close its U.S. stores on Thanksgiving. It joins Staples, GameStop and others in staying closed on the holiday. Two weeks ago, Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI) took it a step further by saying its stores, distribution centers and headquarters would be closed on Black Friday.
The ease of online shopping has kept some retailers from opening their doors ahead of Black Friday. And the decision to close on Thanksgiving to give employees time with their families can also lead to increased brand loyalty from shoppers.
Last year, Black Friday weekend sales dropped 11% and shopper traffic was down 5.2%, evidence that promotions on Thanksgiving cannibalize sales later in the weekend.
Black Friday shoppers generally look for big-ticket items such as flat screen TVs that carry a larger discount than apparel promotions, said Charlie O’Shea, retail analyst for Moody’s.
“Frankly, it surprised me that there were so many that were opening early over the last couple of years,” O’Shea said. “Our view is maybe there’s not the profit potential that there is if you’re a larger retailer doing that.”
Shoppers venturing out during the holiday season could see more promotions at Macy’s stores. The Cincinnati-based retailer said Wednesday that its sales did not improve in the third quarter as expected and attributed this to “tepid” spending in key apparel and accessories by U.S. customers.
“Heading into the fourth quarter, we are shifting our organization into overdrive to focus on sales-driving activities in the holiday shopping season, company Chief Executive Terry Lundgren said in a statement.
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