Black Friday in-person sales plummet, as online sales sky rocket

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Courtesy of Creative Commons

A retail store during Black Friday weekend

Brittyn Leonard, Co-editor-in-chief

Every year, Thanksgiving night, people flock stores and malls in hopes of finding the perfect deals. Lines form and crowds gather outside waiting for the businesses to open their doors. Black Friday is the perfect day to buy all your Christmas gifts while getting the best deals. It is a tradition followed by most Americans, but with this past year, sales were down. With COVID-19 having such an impact on not just local businesses but sales around the country, it could only be predicted that this year’s Black Friday would not be like the rest.

With the internet booming and families having to be stuck inside during quarantine, online shopping became the new norm. Businesses were forced to close for the season, and some even entirely before Black Friday even came around. This year, the flood to stores decreased as retailers tried to prevent crowds by cutting down hours and limiting deals.

Junior Darby Moore has gone Black Friday shopping every year with her family. This year, her and her mom hit the stores. Moore expressed her experience, “…it felt normal as far as the crowds. You could not find a parking spot in the outlets and there were lines to get in most of the stores due to capacity limits of the stores.” Moore also went the following day to Rehoboth, for Small Business Saturday and said stores also, “…had a nice crowd.”

In addition to Moore, Senior Anna Rosenberg also went shopping this past Friday. She expressed her experience has “pretty normal” and also said, “…expect for people wearing masks and waiting in line to get into stores, not much looked different during Black Friday at the Salisbury mall. I think the holidays definitely brings cheer and a sense of normalcy.”

According to Marketwatch.com, “…apparel sales were down 50 percent while sales of home goods fell by 39 percent and jewelry and footwear saw some of the biggest in-person sales declines.” The Washington Post also reported, “Fewer Americans shopped on Black Friday weekend, and those who did spent 14 percent less than last year.”

Black Friday shopping however was not a complete bust. While in-person sales were down, store’s websites benefited big with their online deals. According to adobeanaytics, an online tracking service, “…consumers spent an estimate 9 billion dollars on U.S. retail websites on Black Friday.”

In addition to Black Friday, Cyber Monday was a huge success. CNBC stated, “Online sales reach 10.8 billion dollars in sales on Cyber Monday, biggest U.S. e-commerce day ever.”

Whether stores had their deals online or in-person, Black Friday this year was still one of the biggest shopping days of the year. Some may argue that sales were down so low that it affected the overall business of the stores, but what they lost in in-person sales, stores made up big with online shopping. Although in-person appearance lacked this year, it is a big step into our future, as more and more stores start to move solely to online.