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Stores open early for Black Friday in Cumming
shopping

24 plus hour stores and sales:
• JCPenney: Black Friday sales will begin at 3 p.m. Thanksgiving Day and stores will stay open until 10 p.m. Friday. Online sales begin a day earlier, at midnight Nov. 23.
• Target: Black Friday sales will open 6 p.m. Thursday and stores will stay open until 11 p.m. Friday. It also has its 10 Days of Deals and Black Friday Presale promotions; Sunday and Monday’s 10 Days of Deals are still a mystery.
• Walmart: Though many Walmart Supercenters are already open 24 hours, pre-Black Friday deals have already begun and the in-store Black Friday sale will begin at 6 p.m. Thursday. Online deals are available all day.

With one of the most anticipated shopping days of the year right around the corner, retailers, businesses and shoppers are gearing up for Black Friday.

At the Target on Market Place Boulevard, Steve Reed and his team are preparing for the big day and the holiday shopping season to follow.
Reed, the store’s team leader, says he usually knows what to expect on Black Friday and at Target’s Thursday evening opening.

Target is one of many stores open Thanksgiving and the day after, but one of fewer that remains open for 24 hours straight.
Reed says this adds to the Black Friday experience.

“This is a very special time, kicking off the holiday season,” he said. “[Black Friday] warrants different hours so we can [make] it a special shopping experience for everyone.”

According to Adobe Digital Insights, or ADI, which is part of Adobe’s online marketing sector, this year’s Black Friday weekend is expected to be bigger than ever.

In its 2016 holiday shopping predictions report, ADI estimates Friday sales will hit more than $3 billion — up 11.3 percent from last year.

Just 5 percent of customers will drive 35 percent of this revenue, the report said, and sales are expected to reach more than $3 billion on Cyber Monday.

Combined, Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales are expected to bring in more than $8 billion — an 11.5 percent increase from last year’s revenue.

And that doesn’t include the four weeks before Christmas that follow the Thanksgiving holiday – a period of time in which typical United States retailers report as much as one quarter of their total annual sales occur.

Out of the 61 days beginning Nov. 1 and ending Dec. 31, 57 are expected to bring in $1 billion-plus in revenue daily, with 53 of those days falling consecutively.

That makes for a total of more than $91 billion — or about $285 per person.

But it’s not just about the money, Reed said.

“There’s always that excitement of tradition, of starting the holiday season,” he said. “My favorite part is being able to fill a kid’s wish list, and having the parents come in, too, to help with that. It’s challenging when we can’t fill every person’s list; it’s never fun to say we’re out of something. You always want to do that one more thing.”

But, he added, Target tries to ensure everyone can find something on their list, and they almost always succeed.

And for that, retailers, gift-givers and recipients have something to be thankful for.