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Up to 147 Million Shoppers to Visit Stores, Shop Online Black Friday Weekend, According to NRF

For Immediate Release
Shari Brown or Kathy Grannis (855) NRF-PRESS

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Up to 147 Million Shoppers to Visit Stores, Shop Online Black Friday Weekend, According to NRF

Washington, November 15, 2012 – Not since 2007 has Thanksgiving come this early, but the calendar creep won’t keep millions of eager holiday shoppers from visiting their favorite stores and websites over Black Friday weekend. According to a preliminary Black Friday shopping survey, up to 147 million people plan to shop Black Friday weekend (Friday, Saturday and Sunday), a slight decrease from the 152 million who planned to do so last year.* Specifically, 71 million said they would shop and another 76 million said they would wait and see what retailers have in-store that weekend.

“Though the Black Friday tradition is here to stay, there’s no question that it has changed in recent years; already there is a tremendous amount of excitement and anticipation surrounding retailers’ Thanksgiving and Black Friday promotions,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “It’s critical for retail companies to constantly evolve as consumers do, and right now shoppers want great deals, good value, and convenience—exactly what we’re seeing with this season’s late and early openings, price-matching, layaway, and mobile offerings.”

Though holiday sales announcements are hard to miss, there are a few ways people prefer to keep track of retailers’ promotions. Half (49.5%) will keep up with advertising circulars throughout the holiday season and three in 10 (30.5%) say they will use television advertisements to stay up-to-date with upcoming sales and events. There are also a growing number of Americans who prefer to see things digitally; 26.8 percent will follow retailers’ websites, and 31.4 percent will track emails from retailers in order to get the latest holiday announcements.

“The days of waking up Thanksgiving morning to find out what retailers’ Black Friday promotions will be has transitioned into an ongoing dialogue between companies and their customers starting days in advance,” said BIGinsight Consumer Insights Director Pam Goodfellow. “Through sites like Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest, company blogs, emails and mobile apps, consumers can connect with their favorite retailers like never before.”

Digital Promotions for Black Friday Growing

Retailers’ online, mobile and in-store promotions, especially for their Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday offerings, continue to grow. According to Shop.org’s eHoliday survey conducted by BIGinsight, three in 10 (29.0%) multichannel retailers say they will promote their in-store Black Friday deals with mobile alerts, up significantly from the 18.4 percent who planned to do so last year. Additionally, 80.6 percent will use Facebook to alert shoppers about in-store deals, up from 73.7 percent last year.

CyberMonday.com Announces Black Friday Deals of the Hour

Shop.org’s CyberMonday.com, which features promotions and deals from hundreds of retailers, will feature a Deal of the Hour on Black Friday from more than 20 different retailers. Retailers participating in the Deal of the Hour include Sears.com, Kohl’s, Macys.com, Sephora.com, drugstore.com, eBags.com and Barnes & Noble.com. Click here for a full list of companies and times. Offers will include free shipping specials, dollars off and even free gifts with purchase. Retailers will also use CyberMonday.com to promote their Cyber Monday Deal of the Hour. NRF will announce retailers’ Cyber Monday promotions on Sunday, November 25.

NRF Black Friday Spending Results and Weekend Contact Information

NRF will release the results of its Thanksgiving weekend survey by 2 p.m. ET on Sunday, November 25 and will hold a special media briefing the same day at 2:30 p.m. ET. Information will include what time people started shopping on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday, how much they spent, and the percent spent online in total over the weekend. NRF will also be releasing information about the number of people who plan to shop online on Cyber Monday. Results of Cyber Monday shopping will be released Wednesday, November 28.

NRF offices will be closed Friday, November 23, but members of the communications department will be available from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. at their office line. To request a print or broadcast interview with an NRF spokesperson at anytime, please use the below contact information:

Kathy Grannis: 202-626-8189 (8 a.m. – 3 p.m.) or cell 202-821-7513 or grannisk@nrf.com
Shari Brown: 202-626-8173 (8 a.m. – 3 p.m.) or cell 347-707-0479 or browns@nrf.com

About the Survey

The NRF 2012 holiday spending survey was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the winter holidays. The survey polled 9,383 consumers and was conducted for NRF by BIGinsight from November 1-6, 2012. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.0 percent.

The eHoliday Study, now in its tenth year, provides an authoritative snapshot of the holiday activities of both large and small online retailers, many of which have been in business for at least ten years, and also includes the sentiments of online holiday shoppers. The Study, conducted by BIGinsight for Shop.org, surveyed 2,988 consumers from September 26 – October 11, 2012 and 40 online retailers from September 25 – October 11, 2012.

BIGinsight delivers executives timely, consumer-centric insights from multiple sources. As a comprehensive resource of information, BIGinsight represents the voice of the consumer and provides knowledge to marketers regarding consumer views on the economy, personal finance, retail, lifestyle, media and domestic and world issues. www.BIGinsight.com.

As the world’s largest retail trade association and the voice of retail worldwide, NRF represents retailers of all types and sizes, including chain restaurants and industry partners, from the United States and more than 45 countries abroad. Retailers operate more than 3.6 million U.S. establishments that support one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.5 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s Retail Means Jobs campaign emphasizes the economic importance of retail and encourages policymakers to support a Jobs, Innovation and Consumer Value Agenda aimed at boosting economic growth and job creation. www.nrf.com.


*  NRF’s 2011 Black Friday weekend results survey, released on Sunday after Thanksgiving/Black Friday, found an estimated 220 million shoppers visited stores and websites over Thanksgiving weekend. Shopping results for 2012 will be released this year on Sunday, November 25.