Starting Black Friday Sales Early

For Sears and other large retailers, this year’s Black Friday came before Halloween, which came with hopes to meet the growing customer demand for sale-priced items.

The Washington Post reports Sears announced it is launching a sales campaign called “Black Friday Now” that will feature weekly big discounts through Thanksgiving. The sale, which began October 30, includes $80 diamond earrings and 50 percent off a 302-piece Craftsman tool set.

Retailers have been chomping at the bit to go after Christmas sales this year. “They’re definitely thinking about the holidays sooner rather than later this year,” says Sears spokeswoman Natalie Norris-Howser of her company’s shoppers.

The spokeswoman also said Sears customers were looking for Black Friday-style sales without the crowds. “A lot of them don’t necessarily like to get up and do the panic Friday shopping the day after Thanksgiving,” she said.

In addition, Sears and its sister-company Kmart are realizing an earlier Black Friday may translate into a more successful layaway program, which will give shoppers a better chance to pay for their gifts over time leading up to Christmas.

For more about earlier Black Fridays from some of the country’s biggest retailers, click here.

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