Skip to comments.The Black Friday Death Spiral for Retailers
Posted on 11/21/2012 5:40:34 AM PST by ExxonPatrolUs
Retailers -- Web-based and real-world -- have trained consumers to demand a bargain, and now they're living with the results.
MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL A couple of guys are camped out in the parking lot of a mall outside Pittsburgh, having arrived last Friday in order to be first in line when Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) opens its doors for Black Friday sales. They had hoped to set a nationwide record, but have since learned that some people showed up even earlier at one of the stores in California. They feel that this is cheating, since winter camping is a lot easier on Californias early-bird shoppers.
They have clearly bought into the concept of Black Friday as a competitive sport, but its worth asking exactly what Best Buy or any other retailer hopes to get out of the ever-spiraling competition for Black Friday sales. By the way, those Black Friday sales started on Monday, Nov. 19, on the Web, and in the real world will begin as early as 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day.
After four dismal years of recession, a number of prognosticators have at least a modest degree of optimism about the holiday season ahead. But one reason expectations are modest is that retailers have conditioned consumers to respond to deals. Few will respond as enthusiastically as those guys camping out in Pittsburgh, but we sure have gotten the message that full retail is for suckers.
(Excerpt) Read more at minyanville.com ...
Just bought a new refrigerator last night with the missus at “Black Friday” pricing. We priced it on the web, printed it out, took it into the store, and they honored the price. Didn’t have to wait in long lines or get up at 4 AM to do it.
This over-commercialization of the Christmas season is becoming destructive to the fabric of America. We’re supposedly family-centric as a nation but retailers are opening their doors at 10 PM on Thanksgiving night for shoppers.
At some point the public will become so oversaturated that the entire meaning of Christmas and the season will be lost to commercial interests and a chase to make business budgets break even in Q4. It will become increasingly difficult and the fervor will grow to a fever pitch as businesses start losing quarter-after-quarter of revenue to Obama’s taxes and losses of jobs and incomes by the consumers.
Elections have consequences.
I love those Minyanville snipets. Surprised they don’t get more airplay here at FR.
Ubama is going to give the unions card-check, and the NLRB is going to force all employers to turn over the names and addresses of all their employees to the unions.
With these two tools, they can forge the signatures of employees and unionize and company without the consent of the employer or employees.
And their first target is going to be Walmart and the billions of dollars of union dues they will be able to extort for the Democrat campaign-finance slush fund.
The Black Friday Walmart walkouts are being orchestrated straight out of the White Hut. You can take that to the bank.
Once Walmart goes down, the rest of the employers in the country will follow in short order.
Never have and never will be out “running with the wolves” on Black Friday. This year, I am pushing for “no presents” for Christmas except for the two youngest children in the family. The adults have been putting their name in a hat at Thanksgiving & drawing one person for whom to buy a gift; however, it’s pretty much lost all meaning. My folks and my in-laws are all quite elderly & with major health issues ... I’m thinking for one or more of them, this will be their last Christmas so family time together is most precious and I plan to work hard to make sure this Christmas is memorable ... and not because of anything material. The reason for the season, God’s greatest gift, is also the reason why I do not fear for my family when they depart this earth, so that is what we will focus on.
You nailed it 100%
I would not go anywhere near a Walmart this Christmas season because the unions are launching the full-court press to organize them. It is gonna be hell and organized chaos in virtually all of their stores.
In their minds this will be a major coup. A counterpoint to Reagan firing the air traffic controllers (which in their warped little world is virtually the entire reason for the current state of unions).
I suspect with Obama fully in control of the NLRB they will eventually cave and accept a union. And then it will be “game on” in every other workplace in the country.
you might be right. I asked the lady at the Walmart if she was going on strike and she hadn’t heard anything about it.
Some folks were discussing this on a local talk show yesterday. The discussion point came up that back in the early-to-mid-1900s, most retailers were closed for Thanksgiving and the remainder of the week through Monday. The employees were all home with their families. That was the meaning of Thanksgiving for most. It was a time of reflection.
I watch movies like “A Christmas Story” and think of how great things must’ve been back then, how simple. It wasn’t a competition for who could spend the most or buy the most elaborate gift. It was a time to enjoy family and celebrate Christ’s birth. To question a Nativity scene or smear the season usually meant a meeting with some burly union ironworkers behind your local bar.
I also heard recently there’s a push to remove any references to smoking or tobacco in famous holiday stories such as “The Night Before Christmas.” Just unreal how low we, as a society have stooped. I’m sad for my future.
Passed a Mickey D’s with a banner out front reading “Open Thanksgiving Day and Christmas”.
There just aren’t any more Truett Cathys in the pipeline.
It’s disgusting and disrespectful in my opinion. Others may call me anti-capitalist, but I believe there should be a modicum of respect and dignity for the beliefs of others around this time of year. We’re still a majority Christian nation, regardless how much the media wants us to be “global.”
Over time the predictable result will of course be a lot of ticked-off workers who conclude that “Capitalists really ARE a bunch of greedy bastages. We need to elect some Socialists to regulate Ebenezer Scrooge and to take away some of his ill-gotten gains”.
I know, right? I think the point I was trying to make was that you don’t have to wait in lines for deals on stuff if you’re in the market. The wife and I agreed that we would pool our funds together this year and in lieu of individual gifts, we would buy a house gift and just enjoy one another on Christmas day. Seems a lot less of a hassle to me.
But yes, there’s tragic irony on display not just in my post but everywhere across this nation.
The one that really burns me is the Veterans Day mattress sale. My dad, my father-in-law and 8 uncles served in WWII and this the way their sacrifice is honored! I was not a happy Veteran when I saw that ad.
The stores won’t be seeing my dollars. One, I don’t have dollars and two, I don’t need more junk.
a Sandra Fluke’s Birthday Mattress Sale would make more sense
Christmas movies on television throughout the year have completely secularized this sacred holiday. I would dare say that the majority of American children do not know the true meaning of Christmas. However, they do know about every episode of Harry Potter.
Good point. I guess it is just my own personal bias on behalf of my relatives. I don’t have problem celebrating Veterans Day with the living, but a thought, a prayer and a toast to the deceased should also be in order. Thank you for your service.
Your post bothers me at the end. I advocate for freedom, not an oppressive government that could force stores to stay closed.
And if you needed to go out for Christmas dinner, there was always a Chinese restaurant nearby. ;)
It used to be the bargains were loss leaders, you drew them in for one thing really cheap and they’d buy other stuff. Now in the internet age people look up their prices before hand, they buy the other stuff as a bargain somewhere else. Lazy people like me seem to be the only ones keeping retail going, I refuse to work harder spending my money than I did making it, and in the software industry I don’t work that hard making it.
“But what I’m seeing (and disliking) more and more, is Veteran’s Day being “celebrated” as the somber, dark day of mourning complete with Taps, wreath laying and sad speeches.
... I always thought Veterans Day was more to honor the living vets, and Memorial Day was to honor the dead. “
Glad I am not the only one who has noticed this.
You are correct, 100%.
At some point the public will become so oversaturated that the entire meaning of Christmas and the season will be lost to commercial interests
Speed limits ok as long as done at local level. Store hours -never.
Families can still do this; it only takes a little effort.
Camping out on a sidewalk for days, fighting each other, going for days without sleep. If only they put this much effort into finding a job.