Survey: Thanksgiving Weekend to Be “Shopping Intensive”

New York—Black Friday (and Cyber Monday) are usually among the top three shopping days of the year…but now—as more retailers plan to open on Thanksgiving day—the entire Thanksgiving holiday weekend is becoming “shopping intensive.”

According to a special national consumer poll of 1,000 households commissioned by the International Council of Shopping Centers, Inc. (ICSC) and Goldman Sachs and conducted between Oct. 31 and Nov. 3, a hefty 46% of consumers plan to shop on Black Friday (Nov. 29), a day where the prime retail focus is on the bargain-conscious consumer.


This year, 13% of shoppers say they will venture out on Thanksgiving Day (aka “Grey Thursday”?) to shop.

Moreover, the weekend following Black Friday is likely to be busy as well, with 34% of consumers expecting to shop. Cyber Monday (Dec. 2) also pops up as an important shopping day with 42% of consumers planning to shop online during that day.

“The expansion of the Thanksgiving bargain-shopping days to include Thanksgiving Day and Cyber Monday has transformed this period with more intensive shopping planned for Black Friday this year than at any time since at least 2009 when this survey began,” said Michael P. Niemira, vice president of research/chief economist for ICSC.

The Thanksgiving holiday weekend has always been marked by family, food and football “with about two-thirds of those consumers planning to shop over the five-day period between Thanksgiving Day and Cyber Monday,” Niemira said.


Younger Consumers Most Likely to Shop

The ICSC-GS survey also found that bargain-priced holiday gift buying is the chief motivation to be shopping on Black Friday, but some 27% of consumers who plan to shop that day are primarily looking for bargains—not holiday gifts.

Taking into consideration the consumer profile of Thanksgiving days (Thanksgiving Day through Cyber Monday) shoppers, the survey found a relatively predictable pattern—the younger the consumer, the more likely that person will be shopping during the Thanksgiving period.


The silent generation—those born between 1928 and 1945—are the least likely to be shopping during those days, while 73% of generation X (born between 1965 and 1980) and 84% of generation Y (born between 1981 and 1993) are likely to be shopping.




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