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Why Black Friday is absolutely crucial for struggling retailers

Question: What are you planning to buy this year?

This year, Black Friday is more than just the starting gun for the all-important holiday shopping season (or the day you elbow your neighbor out of the way to score a TV). For retail’s struggling players, shopping’s mega-day is crucial.

Remember: In September 2017, Toys “R” Us filed for bankruptcy in hopes of turning around its struggling business. But terrible holiday sales left it on life support. The company said it would close all its US stores three months later.

There are six fewer shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas on the calendar than last year. But there’s no other reason stores should stutter. As my CNN Business colleague Nathaniel Meyersohn points out: Consumer confidence remains high, and low unemployment should buttress spending.

The National Retail Federation estimates retail sales in November and December will grow between 3.8% and 4.2% compared with a year ago.

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