Are you ready for Black Friday? It’s the day after Thanksgiving that kicks off holiday shopping with door-buster deals. Well, now it’s more than a day. It’s Black Friday Month. According to MSNBC, a growing number of stores have already been offering huge deals, months before the big kick-off date. For example, Best Buy launched their holiday sales back on October 1st, and Sears started their "Black Friday" sales weeks ago. You may think those extra holiday sales mean extra savings, but often, they’re just a trick to get you to spend more.
Why? Retailers started sales earlier than ever because they wanted to continue the momentum from the successful back-to-school shopping season. Even then, shoppers waited to buy until the very last minute - when prices were drastically slashed. So, retailers are trying to break customers of their last-minute shopping habit. Here are the top tactics they’re using to trick you into shopping all month long.
- They’re trying to get you to splurge on you. Glenn Murphy is the CEO of clothing giant GAP, and he says their holiday strategy is to pack stores with “buy for me” items, like tailored black pants, and then follow up with “buy for others” items.
Another way retailers are trying to get you to spend more now: They’re offering more discounts than ever. For example, Wal-Mart has supersized its holiday "rollbacks," their famous short-term deals on everything from cribs to TVs. This fall, the company has cut prices on 600 more items than last year.
- Retailers are offering free shipping when you order online, if you spend enough. For example, JC Penney offers free shipping if you spend at least $70, and Target’s threshold is $50. Experts say even if you only wanted to buy one item, you’ll probably buy things you don’t need just to meet the free shipping requirement, and that’s no savings at all.