Black-friday-linesIt’s Black Friday! Nicknamed “Black Friday” because it is traditionally the day retailers go from being “in the red” to being in “the black,” the day after Thanksgiving has become an American tradition, as well as an early predictor for holiday shopping sales. At Hartman Simons, we have many, many retail clients — so we keep a close eye on industry trends. The National Retail Federation conducts great research and here are FOUR of the organization’s predictions for today and for the holiday shopping season.

1) This year, 152 million people planned to shop Black Friday weekend (Friday through Sunday), higher than the 138 million people who planned to do so last year. NRF’s survey also showed 74 million people said they would definitely hit the stores and another 77 million were waiting to see if the bargains were worth braving the cold and the crowds.

2) Holiday sales will rise approximately 3.3 percent this year. This is more than the ten-year average, but not as high as the 5.2 percent gain we saw last year.

3) Half of Americans with smartphones will use their devices for holiday shopping this year. Consumers will use them to research products, read reviews, compare prices, redeem coupons, and check store hours/locations. However, only 16 percent will use their phone for making purchases.

4) Although the majority of shoppers will visit discount retailers for holiday shopping, nearly every retail category will see increased traffic including clothing, grocery, department, craft and electronic stores.