Up to 152 Million Shoppers Expected to Visit Stores, Websites Black Friday Weekend, According to NRF Survey

The NRF reports the number of people who say they are “Definitely” shopping on Black Friday jumps from 27 percent in 2010 to 33 in 2011.

Washington, November 17, 2011 – Though there are already plenty of great deals on everything from e-readers and smartphones to apparel and toys, Americans know there is only one Black Friday - and the best is yet to come. According to a preliminary Black Friday shopping survey, conducted for the National Retail Federation by BIGresearch, up to 152 million people plan to shop Black Friday weekend (Friday, Saturday and Sunday), higher than the 138 million people who planned to do so last year. According to the survey, 74 million people say they will definitely hit the stores and another 77 million are waiting to see if the bargains are worth braving the cold and the crowds.

“Though many retailers are already touting select Black Friday ads, there’s no doubt we’ll all be blown away by what retailers still have in their bag of tricks for shoppers,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “We fully expect to see excited shoppers as early as midnight at stores around the country, as many holiday shoppers would rather stay up all night to take advantage of retailers’ Black Friday deals rather than set their alarm to wake up the next morning.”

For the first time, NRF asked shoppers how they plan to keep track of retailers’ holiday sales and promotions announcements. Half (50.5%) will keep up with advertising circulars throughout the holiday season and nearly one-third (31.7%) said they will tune in to watch retailers’ holiday commercials. Additionally, nearly one-quarter (23.1%) will seek out coupon websites like RetailMeNot.com and FatWallet.com, and 32.3 percent will specifically keep track of the email coupons they receive from retailers.

“Social media will play a big role in how shoppers follow company sales announcements this holiday season,” said Phil Rist, Executive Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, BIGresearch. “From Facebook to Twitter and even group buying sites, ‘social’ retailers may be rewarded this season in terms of additional holiday sales.”

The survey found 17.3 percent will monitor retailers’ Facebook pages and 11.3 percent will check out group-buying sites like Groupon and LivingSocial. Of those who own tablet devices and who plan to shop for or research holiday items this year, one in five (21.3%) will seek out group buying sites and 31.2 percent will check out retailers’ Facebook pages.

View NRF’s Black Friday Shopping Tips.

Retailers Ramping Up Social Media, Email Campaigns to Boost Store Traffic This Black Friday

As retailers prep their stores for the biggest shopping weekend of the year, they are also ramping up their activity online. This Black Friday, retailers will harness the power of social media and the Internet to bring shoppers into stores. According to the Shop.org eHoliday Survey, conducted by BIGresearch, eight in 10 (84.2%) retailers will send an email to their customers about Black Friday deals, up from 80.0 percent last year. A marked increase from last year, nearly three-quarters (73.7%) will use their Facebook page to reach out to shoppers, up from 57.1 percent last year. Additionally, many retailers will utilize their website’s home page (50.0%) and Twitter (57.9%) to announce and promote Black Friday deals.

CyberMonday.com Announces Black Friday Deals of the Hour

Black Friday is no longer just about offering eager holiday shoppers great deals in their stores; retailers are also preparing special e-Commerce deals for online shoppers that day. 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 Black Friday Deal of the Hour include Sears.com, homedepot.com, Barnes & Noble.com, eBags.com, Macys.com, BestBuy.com. Lowes.com, Kmart.com and many more. (Click here for the full list of companies and times.) Offers will include free shipping specials, dollars off, percentages off, and free gifts with purchase. Retailers will also use CyberMonday.com to promote their special Cyber Monday Deal of the Hour. (CyberMonday.com Deal of the Hour information will be announced Sunday, November 27, 2011.)

Black Friday Contact Information and Additional Details

NRF will release the results of its Black Friday weekend survey by 1:30 p.m. EST on Sunday, November 27 and will hold a special media briefing at 2 p.m. EST. Information will include what time people started shopping on Black Friday, where they shopped, how much they spent, and what they purchased. NRF will also be releasing findings from a new survey on the number of people expected to shop on Cyber Monday.

About the Survey

The NRF 2011 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to the winter holidays. The survey polled 8,502 consumers and was conducted for NRF by BIGresearch from November 1-8, 2011. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.0 percent.

The eHoliday Study, now in its ninth 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 BIGresearch for Shop.org, surveyed 1,685 online holiday shoppers from September 19 – October 7, 2011 and 51 online retailers from September 22 – October 14, 2011.

BIGresearch® consumer intelligence provides analysis of behavior in areas of products and services, retail, financial services, automotive and media. The Consumer Intentions and Actions® Survey (CIA®) of 8,000+ respondents is conducted monthly and the Simultaneous Media Usage® Survey (SIMM®) of 15,000+ respondents is conducted semi-annually.

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.


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