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WRAL SmartShopper

Majority of NC won't shop Thanksgiving & Black Friday

Posted November 22, 2016

High Point University Poll on Thanksgiving shopping in NC

A new High Point University Poll has found that an overwhelming majority of North Carolinians will NOT be shopping on Black Friday or Thanksgiving Day.

Will you?

Here are the specifics of the poll including how much people expect to spend, on average for gifts, food, decorations and more.

The High Point University Poll found that an overwhelming majority (78 percent) of North Carolinians do not plan to shop on the Friday after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday. An even higher number of respondents (84 percent) will be staying out of the stores on Thanksgiving Day as well.

This sentiment is echoed when asked their opinion about businesses that require their employees to work on Thanksgiving Day. A majority of respondents (54 percent) said they were less likely to shop at businesses that mandate the holiday for employees.

"The poll results reflect a growing sentiment that the deals on Thanksgiving and Black Friday may no longer be worth it," says Dr. Daniel Hall, assistant professor of economics at High Point University. "Perhaps the deals are not as big as they used to be, or there are more comparable deals throughout the holiday shopping season and through online shopping. The cost of less time with the family is higher as families may live farther apart or have busier schedules for various reasons. People may also feel guilty about retail employees spending less time with their families so they can get deals."

When North Carolinians do shop for the holidays, they plan to do most of their shopping at brick and mortar stores (43 percent) versus online (38 percent). The proportion of shoppers going online may be increasing as only about one quarter (27 percent) said they would do most of their shopping online according to the HPU Poll in 2015.

2016 Holiday Spending

A majority (51 percent) of North Carolinians say they'll spend the same amount of money on the holidays this year compared to last year. When asked how much they plan to spend, the poll found that on average, $1,059 will be spent on gifts, food, decorations and other items related to the holidays.

"Whatever the reasons, consumer sovereignty could put market forces into play that will decrease the shopping importance of these holidays," said Hall. "Consumers may buy less on these shopping days, generating less revenue for retailers. This will make it harder for retailers to offer higher wages to induce employees to work these holidays. Less retailers will in turn participate, further lowering the competition between stores and the size of deals that entice consumers to shop."

"About half of those surveyed will spend about the same this holiday season as last year, which is roughly $1,000," says Brian McDonald, assistant director of the HPU Poll and adjunct professor. "And while about the same percentage of North Carolinians do not plan on shopping on the day after Thanksgiving as last year, there is a slight uptick in the percentage of online shoppers this year."

For all the poll details and questions head to www.highpoint.edu/.


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  • jdouglas13 Nov 22, 2016

    I don't really see myself shopping on Thanksgiving unless the pie falls upside down on the floor; maybe even not then. Any Black Friday shopping will be done online.

  • 2edb33fa Nov 22, 2016

    Didn't we just learn not to trust polls? haha