Stores ramp up for Black Friday

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November 26, 2015 12:45 PM

The darkest day in sales is almost here and local businesses are making sure shelves are stocked and inventory is topped up.
Over the last half decade or so, more Canadians have been taking to the Black Friday idea to the point where some businesses have had to adjust their operations for the year.
Stores like Lloydminster’s Sound Obsessions have even stretched the day out into a three-day sale.
“Black Friday is a bit (busier),” said Sound Obsessions owner, Toby Harris, when comparing the day to the rest of the year.
“They have now, in the last five years, become our biggest sales of the year.”
Harris said even though they don’t get huge lineups or stampedes of customers, they do get pretty aggressive with their sales.
But because they stretch the sale over a two or three day event and much of their traffic comes from repeat customers, there’s less urgency and people can shop in a more relaxed environment.
The deals are still there, though, and much of the merchandise storewide goes for 40 to 50 per cent off.
A lot of their Black Friday stock is purchased exclusively for the event and because the deals are so tempting for customers that Harris said sales for the month of Nov. are taking away from December’s numbers.
“A lot of people are taking advantage of that Black friday and they’re getting Christmas shopping done earlier and it’s taking some of our dollars out of December but it is what it is, just evening things out.”
Simone McLauchlan, sales consultant at Furniture Gallery, said her store is also seeing more traffic on Black Friday but agrees that the environment is more relaxed than what people might find at the big box stores.
Furniture Gallery also offers special deals, and though McLauchlan can’t say exactly what they’ll be because the owner of the store keeps it a secret until the day before, she said there is definitely a fair amount of items on sale.
“We don’t cause a rush or a panic with our deals,” McLauchlin said with a laugh. “We just try to be staffed, that’s about it, just in case.”

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