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NRF predicts bigger shopper turnout for Black Friday weekend

WASHINGTON — Up to 152 million people plan to shop Black Friday Weekend, compared with the 138 million who planned to do so last year, according to a preliminary Black Friday shopping survey, conducted for the National Retail Federation by BIGresearch. According to the survey, 74 million people say they will definitely hit the stores and another 77 million are waiting to see if the bargains are worth the hassle of Black Friday.

“Though many retailers are already touting select Black Friday ads, there’s no doubt we’ll all be blown away by what retailers still have in their bag of tricks for shoppers,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “We fully expect to see excited shoppers as early as midnight at stores around the country, as many holiday shoppers would rather stay up all night to take advantage of retailers’ Black Friday deals rather than set their alarm to wake up the next morning.” 

According to NRF, shoppers plan to keep track of holiday sales and promotions in a variety of ways. Half (50.5%) said they will keep up with advertising circulars throughout the holiday season and nearly one-third (31.7%) said they will pay attention to retailers’ holiday commercials. Additionally, nearly one-quarter (23.1%) will seek out coupon websites like RetailMeNot.com and FatWallet.com, and 32.3% will specifically keep track of the email coupons they receive from retailers.

Consumers will also be using social media to find deals. The survey found 17.3% will monitor retailers’ Facebook pages and 11.3% will check out group buying sites like Groupon and LivingSocial. Of those who own tablet devices and who plan to shop for or research holiday items this year, one in five (21.3%) will seek out group buying sites and 31.2% will check out retailers’ Facebook pages.

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