Report: Holiday Shoppers Saved So Much On Gas, They Spent 8% More This Year

Report: Holiday Shoppers Saved So Much On Gas, They Spent 8% More This Year

If you felt like you reached into your wallet a few more times this holiday season than last year, or that you were forking over bigger chunks of change, you’re not alone: a new report says retail sales were up 7.9% over 2014’s numbers. [More]

Calling All Last-Minute Shoppers: Today Is “Free Shipping Day”

(Erin Turowski)

It sounds pretty simple — it’s Free Shipping Day today (now you know), so one might think a bunch of retailers are offering up complimentary shipping, for delivery by Christmas Eve. One would be right, because there are a lot of stores dangling that bait, though not all of them will just hand it over without a little song and dance first. [More]

More “Layaway Angels” Pay For $306K In Gifts At Four Walmart Stores

More “Layaway Angels” Pay For $306K In Gifts At Four Walmart Stores

Just hours after “Santa B.,” a so-called layaway angel, shelled out $79,000 to pay for toys and other gifts at a Pennsylvania Walmart, another generous person was paying off $106,000 in balances on layaway orders at two Walmart stores just a state away in Ohio. [More]

‘Tis The Season: Secret ‘Santa B’ Pays For $79K In Layaway Gifts At Pennsylvania Walmart

‘Tis The Season: Secret ‘Santa B’ Pays For $79K In Layaway Gifts At Pennsylvania Walmart

Each year, so-called “layaway angels” visit retailers covering the remaining balances of orders that strangers had planned to pay for over time. This year is no different, as one generous person shelled out $79,000 to pay for toys and other gifts on layaway at a Pennsylvania Walmart.  [More]

Kohl’s To Stay Open 170 Hours Straight For Last-Minute Holiday Shoppers

Kohl’s To Stay Open 170 Hours Straight For Last-Minute Holiday Shoppers

Kohl’s once again wants to make sure you’re able to mark every last item off your holiday shopping list by keeping most of its stores open for more than seven straight days leading up to Christmas.  [More]

UPS Having Trouble Handling Holiday Avalanche Of Online Orders

UPS Having Trouble Handling Holiday Avalanche Of Online Orders

We already know UPS is renting additional vehicles to help with the onslaught of holiday deliveries, but it seems that’s not enough to help the company stay ahead of the avalanche of online orders this time of year. [More]

(Michael)

Is Shopping On Christmas Day The Next Big Thing In Retail?

For better or worse, we’ve come to a point where shopping on Thanksgiving day is no longer a fringe case. But what about Dec. 25? With the exception of some vital retailers — drugstores, the occasional supermarket, gas stations, and, most importantly, movie theaters — most stores don’t even mess with the idea of opening on Christmas. But a new survey says that a not insignificant number of shoppers would be willing to buy stuff after they clean up all the wrapping paper. [More]

"Я" forever. (Coyoty)

Toys ‘R’ Us Closing 110,000-Square-Foot NYC Flagship Store At End Of The Year

This will be the last holiday shopping season for the Toys ‘R’ Us flagship location in Manhattan, as the retailer plans to leave its 110,000-square-foot mega-store at the end of the month.  [More]

(Louis Abate)

Amazon Sends Me Someone Else’s Order. Why Don’t They Care If I Send It Back?

In the midst of all the shopping on Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday, Wet and Wild Wednesday, Thanksgiving 2.0 For People Who Were Out Of Town Or In The Hospital Last Week Thursday, and Black Friday All Over Again Because Why Not?, there are oodles of Amazon packages landing on shoppers’ doorsteps. In some rare cases, those packages might end up on the wrong doorstep, so why does Amazon not seem terribly concerned about getting those items back? [More]

The message seen by visitors to Target.com on Monday.

Target Website Crashes, Spoiling Shoppers’ Cyber Monday

Savvy holiday shoppers who didn’t want to fight the crowds on Black Friday may still be battling congested online traffic in order to obtain the plethora of Cyber Monday deals today. That’s especially true if you’re trying to score some goodies from Target, as the retailer’s website crashed this morning.  [More]

Ann Fisher

Online Retail Passes In-Store Shopping For Black Friday Weekend

Going online for your Black Friday sales fix is now just as popular as trudging out to the mall to shop, according to a new survey from the National Retail Federation. [More]

(Chris Stephens)

It’s Cyber Monday, But Don’t Get Fired For Shopping Too Much At Work

So many people do their holiday shopping online that the idea of “Cyber Monday” seems like a relic of an era when online retail was a novelty in search of legitimacy. Still, the name — and the sales — persist, but shopping on the job today could land you in a heap of trouble with the boss. [More]

Some Shopping Malls Forcing Stores To Open On Thanksgiving

Some Shopping Malls Forcing Stores To Open On Thanksgiving

Everyone knows that a handful of major retailers now choose to open on Thanksgiving, but most smaller businesses have remained closed on the holiday — whether it was out of a desire to enjoy the day, or simply because the extra expense of paying people to work on Thanksgiving wasn’t worth the few hours of additional sales. But now some shopping mall operators are spoiling the holiday for their smaller tenants by forcing them to open up on Thanksgiving. [More]

If You Buy Your Kids “Bunchems” For Christmas, Maybe Get Them A Shower Cap Too

If You Buy Your Kids “Bunchems” For Christmas, Maybe Get Them A Shower Cap Too

An in-demand toy for this holiday season has really got into kids’ heads — or rather, onto their heads, where they can remain for quite some time as parents struggle to free them from youngsters’ hair. [More]

Eavesdropping Barbie, Books About Famous Brands, Bratz Selfie Sticks Lead List Of Year’s Crassest Toys

Eavesdropping Barbie, Books About Famous Brands, Bratz Selfie Sticks Lead List Of Year’s Crassest Toys

Not all toys are equal; just ask those ungrateful children who will throw a tantrum on Christmas morning for getting a GoBot instead of a Transformer (wait — that was me). But some kid-targeted products cross the line from being blah to being truly terrifying. [More]

Empty Shelves Explained: Walmart’s Expansion Greatly Outpaced Its Hiring

Empty Shelves Explained: Walmart’s Expansion Greatly Outpaced Its Hiring

Last year, Walmart finally acknowledged what dozens of Walmart workers had already told us — that maybe the retailer had a slight problem with keeping shelves stocked at some stores. But a new look at store growth and hiring data over the last decade shows that this is not merely a matter of not having a few extra people to work the overnight shift. [More]

Backlash Prompts Nordstrom To Pull “Chai Maintenance” Hanukkah Sweater

Backlash Prompts Nordstrom To Pull “Chai Maintenance” Hanukkah Sweater

‘Tis the season — and by that of course, I mean the holidays can prove to be tricky for the retail industry to maneuver: from security breaches to product delays, layaway debacles to shipping mistakes, we’ve seen all kinds of incidents that turn shoppers against brands and stores. In the latest brouhaha, Nordstrom found itself apologizing to customers for a Hanukkah sweater some called offensive.

[More]

Walmart Changes Black Friday Strategy: Drops Doorbusters, Bulking Up On Inventory

Walmart Changes Black Friday Strategy: Drops Doorbusters, Bulking Up On Inventory

When Walmart stores across the country open their doors at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving day there will be a Black Friday staple missing: hourly doorbuster deals.  [More]