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Press Release

Consumers Bullish on Thanksgiving Weekend with Sales Forecasted to Top $101B

November 14, 2019

NEW YORK, November 14, 2019 – With the biggest shopping event of the year just around the corner, retailers expect a strong turnout at stores and shopping centers this Thanksgiving Weekend. According to the Pre-Black Friday Intentions Survey conducted by ICSC, 85 percent of adults will shop during the four-day weekend, and 80 percent will visit a mall or shopping center. Shoppers anticipate spending an average of $470, totaling $101.4B over the course of the weekend.

Retailers are preparing for the busy weekend, with 84 percent of shoppers planning to spend in a physical store and 40 percent of total spending for the four days taking place on Black Friday. ICSC found that 44 percent of those planning to shop over the weekend will buy online and pick-up in store, and 72 percent of those shoppers will spend additional money while at the store.

Promotions will influence consumer choices this season: 41 percent of shoppers say that promotions and loyalty rewards are key factors when choosing where to shop, with in-store promotions having the most influence on purchasing decisions over the four-day weekend. Shoppers will seek the biggest discounts on electronics and toys, with 37 percent and 31 percent of shoppers, respectively, reporting that they’re much less likely to buy those items if the deals are not good enough.

“Promotions have always been a critical part of a retail strategy, and our research shows the same holds true for this Thanksgiving Weekend – almost two-thirds of shoppers plan their holiday shopping around this weekend,” said Tom McGee, President and CEO of ICSC. “In-store promotions and their impact on consumer habits are clear evidence of the central role physical retail plays in creating a memorable holiday shopping season.”

Topping the list of items consumers expect to purchase this year are apparel and footwear (82 percent), electronics (74 percent), toys/games (74 percent), and food/drink intended as gifts (72 percent). These purchases will be made at discount department stores such as Walmart and Target (93 percent), traditional department stores (73 percent), supermarkets/ specialty food stores (73 percent) and electronics stores (67 percent). Of those who intend to hit the stores on Black Friday, the largest portion (28 percent) will head out between midnight and 6 a.m., with another 27 percent anticipating an arrival time between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m.

Consumers are looking to spend on more than just gifts, they are also planning to spend on experience. In fact, more than 86 percent of those shopping over Thanksgiving Weekend plan to take advantage of experiential and non-traditional tenants, including activities like bowling, visiting a salon or watching a movie. Seventy-seven percent plan to dine at restaurants over the course of the weekend as well.

“The holidays are about spending time with family, friends and loved ones and there are few places better to do that during the holidays than at a mall or shopping center,” said Tom McGee, President and CEO of ICSC. “The Thanksgiving holiday weekend will see consumers spending time with others while buying gifts and dining out while taking advantage of all that physical retail has to offer.”

The ICSC Pre-Black Friday Intentions Survey was conducted online by Engine Insights on behalf of ICSC November 4–6, 2019. The survey represents a demographically representative sample of 1,003 U.S. respondents.

About ICSC
ICSC serves the global retail real estate industry. We provide our 70,000+ member network in over 100 countries with invaluable resources, connections and industry insights, and actively work together to shape public policy. For more information about ICSC visit www.icsc.com.