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Is Black Friday More Important To Retailers Than Consumers?

A University of Indianapolis finance professor says while people still shop on Black Friday, they're getting more savvy with what they're buying.

best buy

Photo: Shein (Flickr)

Black Friday shoppers get a start on holiday shopping at a Best Buy.

Though holiday shopping accounts for up to 40 percent of retailers’ total sales annually, Black Friday isn’t as important to consumers as it used to be. That’s according to University of Indianapolis Finance Professor Matt Will.

He says technology has changed how people shop and smart phones have made it easier for people to know if they’re actually getting a good deal.

“Well, I think people are very wise to the situation,” says Will. “They’ve also been going through some tough economic times. People are tighter with their budget. When they see a sign that flashes the sale symbol, they don’t run to it right away. They look at their wallet first and see if they can really afford it. People know they can go online. They can comparison shop.”

This year most big box retailers opened on Thanksgiving to cater to an early crowd of shoppers.

But at the same time, Will says that’s making it harder for small retailers to compete.

“A higher percentage of their sales are due to the holiday shopping season, and that’s unfortunate because they don’t get the discounts. A Walmart, a JCPenney, a Target — they’re going to get bulk discounts when they buy from manufacturers that the smaller retailers won’t get,” says Will.

Will also says Cyber Monday isn’t a big of deal as it used to be because many retailers will also offer deep discounts online this weekend.

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