Reporting Mary Robb Jackson
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Cost conscious consumers lining up while they’re still digesting their turkey and trimmings; it’s the art of the deal marking that other Thanksgiving tradition, Black Friday.
Black Friday 2012 is on Nov. 23.
“I’ll be having a baby this year, so I’ll be trying to get done as I can,” says Michelle Smithmark , a big fan of Black Friday. “The Targets, the Kmarts – those places seem to be the best sales on Black Friday. I stay away from the malls.”
Maybe you’ve already noticed that pre-Black Friday sales are proliferating and ads for items available only on Black Friday are being leaked to the public – accidentally – on purpose.
“Retailers want to start grabbing a bigger piece of the pie and getting people to buy now,” says Carnegie Mellon University economist Robert Strauss.
But Strauss isn’t sure that means people will spend more.
“All they’re doing is accelerating to today what’s likely to be roughly the same amount of money,” Strauss says.
Fat Wallet, a website for savvy shoppers, works with hundreds of retailers to get a jump on discounts and special deals – pre-Black Friday and on the day itself. A sampling including Cabela’s, Macy’s and even Family Dollar.
Some stores, Home Depot, Kmart, The Body Shop and JoS. A. Bank, are ready to lure shoppers with cash back offers if you shop now.
There are also deep discounts being marketed already like 70 percent at Aeropostale. Best Buy is slashing prices, too.
Many of these early bird buys are also designed to meet Internet pricing. Amazon has been collecting and remitting sales tax on sales into Pennsylvania to level the playing field.
But will any of this stop the madness of Black Friday’s crazy specials.
Professor Strauss doesn’t think so.
“Black Friday is a social event,” he says. “People are going to be looking for something extra.”