I have never really liked Black Friday. I don’t like the crowds, the crazies, or the early morning lines. It is, however, interesting to view it from a management/economic perspective. It used to be that the retailers were participating in a simultaneous, one-shot game for Black Friday each year. They would all publish their ads in the newspaper on Thanksgiving and hope their products would be in-demand and their prices would be the best thus creating a long, long, line out their front door that began forming at some unearthly hour in the morning. My experience at that point was that I would wait in this line, freezing my toes off, just to get into the store to find that the item I was hoping to purchase was sold out after 20 people entered the store.
Retailers now seem to be trying to change the timing and order of moves, creating a sequential-move game. According to Black Friday and Beyond: The ultimate holiday shopping guide, an article by CNN money, retailers are already releasing information about deals to be had on Black Friday. It seems that retailers are hoping that by releasing sale information early they may be able to create first-mover advantages yielding higher pay-offs. This strategy, along with increased “pre-sales and teaser ads”, Thanksgiving Day, and Cyber Monday deals, may help some retailers grab a larger piece of the estimated $369 average to be spent per consumer this year. As for me, I’ll be keeping my toes toasty warm and will be spending my Black Friday with a book and my family. I hope you all have a safe and happy Thanksgiving weekend as well, no matter how you choose to spend it.