Black Friday is approaching, with big deals from many retailers, including Target, Toys R Us, and Walmart.
There are promises of huge savings, complimentary items, and a lot of free stuff. Free finds on Black Friday are off the charts!
Be sure to capitalize by heading to stores offering free gifts and bonus items. If you feel like getting your pet something for Christmas, Petco is giving out free reindeer antlers. If you are shopping for the fisherman in your life (because who isn't?) Bass Pro Shops is giving out free Santa Claus spinners to the first 200 shoppers. They are also conducting a series of raffles and offering other prizes for the first 200 shoppers.
Massive retail shop World Market is even entering the first 100 customers in a drawing for a fully paid vacation for two to Peru! A holiday to beat the winter blues is always a good incentive to get shoppers into the store.
So, what's behind this increase in free specials?
The amount of people shopping on Black Friday has been declining, with, 35 percent of shoppers saying they intend to do most of their shopping on Black Friday this year -- down from 59 percent in 2015. Millennials are instead choosing to shop on other huge savings days, such as "Super Saturday," which falls on the Saturday before Christmas. Waiting until then might give some a panic attack, but it seems most millennials enjoy the thrill of finding last-minute gifts. Also, more people are shopping on Thanksgiving right after the dishes are cleared -- a reported 58 percent of shoppers say they plan on going that day.
These new shopping trends mean a decline in Black Friday popularity. But that also turns into more options.
So stores are also giving out freebies at the door and extra coupons. Head to JCPenney for when the doors open, and you might be chosen to have $500 off your $500 purchase. JCPenney is also giving out coupons to the early shoppers valued at $100.
Many stores are now opening up earlier on Thanksgiving itself to capitalize on the early millennial shopping boom. Macy's will be opening stores from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m., and Toys R Us will be open from 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving to 11 p.m. on Friday. However, having stores open on Thanksgiving has created an ethical dilemma.
Because of this shift in shopping, stores have to have employees working on Thanksgiving. This has created a debate over whether people should be required to work on a holiday on which they're meant to be surrounded by family. A online poll shows that 73 percent of consumers believe people should not have to work on Thanksgiving. When employees have to work on this holiday they may make a little extra, but there is the question of whether that is a good enough incentive. America has become a consumerist nation, and people want the option to shop.
This change in shopping trends shows how millennials are having an influence over retailers, and how they operate. Millennials have the power this holiday season. If you plan on shopping on Thanksgiving or Black Friday, take precautions and stay safe in the wild retail madness!