Black Friday broke shopping records, but not at stores

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Black Friday shoppers spent a record $7.4 billion onli...

Posted: Dec 2, 2019 3:19 PM

Black Friday shoppers spent a record $7.4 billion online this year. But heading to the stores in person on Black Friday, once an annual tradition for many Americans, continues to lose its appeal.

Shopping in brick-and-mortar stores on Black Friday dropped 6.2% compared to 2018, according to data from ShopperTrak, as more customers make their purchases online. But that's not the only reason Black Friday shopping in stores is fading.

Holiday deals are now starting earlier than ever, more stores are opening on Thanksgiving and promotions are extending to Cyber Monday and into December. Foot traffic in stores increased 2.3% on Thanksgiving Day compared with last year, according to ShopperTrak.

Retailers such as Macy's and Nordstrom have expanded their online pickup options for customers who want to avoid crowded stores but don't want to wait for delivery. It's good for the stores, too, as pickup is more profitable than delivering to customers' homes.

"There is no longer one way to shop on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday," said Brian Field, senior director of global retail consulting for ShopperTrak.

With this year's Thanksgiving landing six days later than last year, retailers began stepping up their advertising and promotions before Halloween. They offered steep discounts on such items as appliances, sporting goods, televisions and toys, according to Adobe Analytics.

The decline of shopping in stores on Black Friday offers a window into the state of brick-and-mortar retail today.

Last year, US retailers announced they would close more than 5,800 stores. So far this year, US retailers have announced 9,271 store closures, according to Coresight Research. The list includes companies such as Payless, Forever 21 and Charlotte Russe.

Some companies, such as Walmart, Target, Costco and Best Buy are benefiting from these closures and are expected to have strong holiday seasons. Target's stock has rallied close to 90% this year and is one of the top performers on the S&P 500.

A healthy economy also will bolster these companies during the holidays. The National Retail Federation estimates retail sales in November and December will grow between 3.8% and 4.2% compared with a year ago.

"The consumer remains strong given low levels of unemployment and rising wages," Cowen analysts said in a research report Friday.

But not every retailer will get a lift. Department stores, mall-based stores and companies that have started to close some stores are most at risk for weak holiday stretches, according to Cowen.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 16769

Reported Deaths: 803
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds110426
Madison77829
Lauderdale76569
Neshoba73945
Jones70933
Scott66312
Forrest60039
DeSoto59310
Rankin4639
Leake45512
Holmes44431
Copiah3344
Jackson31415
Attala31218
Yazoo2985
Newton2924
Oktibbeha28314
Leflore28238
Lincoln28131
Wayne2803
Monroe26925
Harrison2687
Lamar2525
Lowndes2529
Pearl River21231
Pike20411
Adams20416
Warren19910
Washington1998
Lee1978
Noxubee1956
Covington1832
Bolivar16911
Jasper1684
Clarke15619
Smith15611
Lafayette1564
Kemper15611
Chickasaw14314
Coahoma1324
Clay1254
Winston1241
Carroll11911
Marion1169
Claiborne1165
Yalobusha1116
Grenada1104
Lawrence1071
Simpson1050
Sunflower963
Tate931
Hancock9012
Marshall893
Union897
Itawamba897
Webster885
Panola873
Wilkinson859
Montgomery841
Jefferson Davis823
Tippah7611
Calhoun684
Walthall670
Amite651
Humphreys647
Tunica583
Prentiss533
Choctaw522
Perry513
Pontotoc493
Jefferson421
Tishomingo360
Stone320
Quitman320
Tallahatchie311
Greene301
George302
Franklin292
Alcorn191
Benton140
Sharkey70
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 19387

Reported Deaths: 676
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Mobile2341123
Jefferson1927105
Montgomery190544
Tuscaloosa85316
Marshall7149
Franklin5939
Lee56334
Shelby53619
Tallapoosa43566
Butler43121
Walker3973
Elmore38110
Chambers36326
Madison3594
Unassigned3144
Morgan3141
Baldwin2969
Dallas2963
Lowndes26912
Etowah26512
DeKalb2603
Autauga2485
Coffee2401
Sumter2369
Houston2275
Pike2231
Bullock2197
Colbert1972
Hale19210
Russell1870
Barbour1831
Marengo1796
Lauderdale1752
Calhoun1693
Cullman1631
Wilcox1587
Choctaw15310
Clarke1492
St. Clair1372
Randolph1288
Dale1250
Marion12511
Talladega1215
Pickens1215
Limestone1100
Chilton1081
Greene955
Macon944
Winston920
Jackson863
Henry842
Covington831
Crenshaw803
Escambia793
Bibb761
Washington746
Blount641
Lawrence510
Monroe492
Geneva450
Perry430
Conecuh421
Coosa401
Cherokee383
Clay282
Lamar280
Fayette160
Cleburne151
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