For the last half-decade or so, the beginning of Black Friday has gradually crept back, with mainstream American retailers giving the shopping holiday precedence over the actual holiday, opening on Thanksgiving Day. Then the trend reversed, as retailers came to realize that they could harvest good publicity by staying closed on the holiday and making sure that the public knows it. We’re guessing that they didn’t earn enough money to make opening on the holiday worth their while. [More]
It was about five years ago that the Thanksgiving shopping trend began to metastasize throughout the retail business: opening times on Black Friday crept back from the wee hours of Black Friday morning to the late hours of Thanksgiving. Malls joined big-box stores, and Thanksgiving Day was fun for a few years. Then a widespread backlash began, and retailers took advantage of that. [More]
While some of us haven’t yet gotten all the beach sand out of shoes or pulled out the fall blankets, there are 34 million people out there who are already in the holiday spirit and have started shopping. [More]
If you’ve noticed more Halloween decorations and candy on store shelves, there’s a good reason for that: Americans are expected to spend an average of $82.93 per person celebrating Halloween this year, or a total of $8.4 billion. [More]
Love’em or hate’em, you’re probably used to seeing brightly-colored marshmallow Peeps in the shape of bunnies and chicks peeking out of Easter baskets every year. But now that hundreds of workers have walked off the job at the factory where the candy is made, is it possible that we may see a dip in the Peeps population next Easter? [More]
Back in January, the Internal Revenue Service made it clear that taxpayers had until April 18 to file their federal income taxes. Apparently, Apple’s calendar didn’t get the message. [More]
I don’t trust costumed animal mascots. Their enormous heads and soulless plastic eyes scare me. An incident at a New Jersey mall over the weekend showed that maybe this mistrust is justified, when a costumed Easter Bunny and a customer physically brawled over child safety issues. [More]
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]
Santa Claus isn’t the only one polishing up his ride for the season: more than 100 million travelers are expected to take a trip for the holidays this year, which is a record number for the travel-heavy season. And, of course, it means sharing the roads and skies with more people than usual, which is always fun. [More]
Survey: Retailers Should Work To Be On Customer Service “Nice List” Year-Round, Or Risk Turning Off Shoppers
If retailers think they can be naughty all year when it comes to customer service, only to take their smiles out of storage and dust’em off when the holidays roll around, they’ve got another think coming, according to a recent survey that says customers can be very unforgiving.
The Christmas show will go on this year at the home of one Idaho man who takes a next-level approach to the holiday: his local homeowner’s association has decided it won’t sue him over his display, which in the past included hundreds of lights, a live camel, carolers and of course, Santa Claus.
It’s only a week until Thanksgiving, which means you’re probably getting your shopping list ready for the big day of feasting. Prepare yourself for (slightly) higher prices than last year, as experts predict that the average Turkey Day dinner will cost more than $50 for the first time ever.
If pumpkin spice, pumpkin spice latte, and caramel apple are the flavors of fall, red velvet is the flavor of Valentine’s Day, and key lime pie and s’mores are the flavor of summer, what is the flavor of winter? Is there one? M&Ms have traditionally sold bags of cherry or mint flavored candies near Christmas, but now they’ve moved on to hot beverages. The flavor for Christmas is… café mocha. [More]
Because there aren’t enough Lego bricks out there waiting for you to step on them, yesterday the Internet flipped out over news that the toy company wouldn’t have enough of the plastic pieces to meet demand this holiday season. “Nooooooo!” the masses wailed, “How can anyone be expected to take such an injustice?” Settle down, guys. LEGO says there’s no reason to freak out — at least, if you live in the U.S.
Sometimes it’s just easier to bypass the hustle and bustle of the local mall and do all your holiday shopping from the comfort of your own home. One big problem with that: the sometimes costly shipping fees. Best Buy is hoping free shipping turns into more online sales this year. [More]
Over the last few years, a growing trend for retailers has been to open up on Thanksgiving Day, sometimes at an obscenely early hour. Maybe that isn’t working out so well for them after all: Staples, one retailer that has opened on Gray Thursday for the last few years, has decided to close up and let its workers spend the holiday at home. [More]