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ICSC: Strong store, mall turnout expected for holiday weekend

shopping at the mall with family

Retailers should get ready for a busy Thanksgiving weekend in stores and at shopping centers.

Eighty-five percent of adults plan to shop during the four-day weekend, and 80% will visit a store or a shopping center, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers’ Pre-Black Friday Intentions Survey. Shoppers anticipate spending an average of $470, totaling $101.4 billion over the course of the weekend, with 40% of total spending for the four days taking place on Black Friday.

ICSC found that 44% of those planning to shop over the weekend will buy online and pick-up in store, and 72% of those shoppers will spend additional money while at the store.

Promotions will influence consumer choices this season. Forty-one 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 (37%) and toys (31%), 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.”

In other findings from the ICSC survey:
• Apparel and footwear (82%) top the list of items consumers expect to purchase this year, followed by electronics (74%), toys/games (74%), and food/drink intended as gifts (72%).

• Purchases will be made at discount department stores such as Walmart and Target (93%), traditional department stores (73%), supermarkets/specialty food stores (73%) and electronics stores (67%). 

• Of those who intend to hit the stores on Black Friday, the largest portion (28%) will head out between midnight and 6 a.m., with another 27% anticipating an arrival time between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m.

• Eighty-six 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.

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