On the retail calendar, Christmas now comes before Halloween.
announced that Target Deal Days are returning as a kickoff to the holiday shopping season—the same days that
com is running its Prime Day promotion.
On Tuesday, Target (ticker: TGT) said Target Deal Days would take place on Oct. 13 and 14, and feature digital deals “on hundreds of thousands of items, more than double last year.” Almost all the products will be available for curbside or in-store pickup, options that have seen huge growth during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The news comes a day after Amazon.com (AMZN) announced its Prime Day sale on those days. The annual promotion usually takes place during the summer, but was delayed because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
It is no coincidence that Target is running its deal days concurrently. Prime Day is a huge event for Amazon, and one that other retailers have tried to take aim at in recent years.
Perhaps more telling is that retailers see this as the opening salvo for an already unorthodox holiday shopping season. In its release, Target said this season will “feature nearly one million more deals than last year, Black Friday pricing all November long and an extended Price Match Guarantee.”
(BBY) and other stores have already announced that they won’t open on Thanksgiving this year because of the pandemic, which makes doorbusting promotions and big crowds that are the usual fare of Black Friday unadvisable. Of course, that doesn’t mean that sales won’t be happening, they will just be pushed online, as so much of retail has this year. Earlier this week, Walmart said it would hire 20,000 seasonal workers in its e-commerce fulfillment centers.
E-commerce has already altered the Christmas rush. Not only did Cyber Monday enter the lexicon, but in recent years retailers have been bringing deals forward, even before Thanksgiving. On the consumer side, e-commerce also allows easier comparison of sales and prices.
Retailers have been extending the holiday shopping season in the hopes of grabbing more dollars, and that may be more critical than ever this year, when high unemployment and economic uncertainty could weigh on shoppers’ budgets.
Write to Teresa Rivas at [email protected]