The media wants to portray the retail wars as opposed to internet sales, not as all retailers trying to win dollars from a broke populace.
So, retail wars are going to be in headlines all the time now that the season is here. We will be made to feel guilty for not buying more. These stories will probably be all about the brick-and-mortar store struggling against Amazon.com. What I suspect won’t be covered very much is merchants trying to cajole debt-burdened and cash-strapped consumers.
And if the holiday season is a failure for retailers, President Trump will be blamed rather than the regime that ran the economy for the previous sixteen years.
As the Christmas shopping season kicks into high gear on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, portraits of St. Nick with a family’s beloved dog are just one way retailers are looking to attract customers in the face of exploding e-commerce.
Brick-and-mortar stores have expanded their bag of tricks — and gotten increasingly bold — as they look to lure shoppers who might otherwise be happy to stay on the couch and pick up gifts while still in their pajamas.
The flagship Bloomingdale’s store in New York has held yoga classes, and Nordstrom has displayed Tesla cars near the section for men’s suits.
A number of shops now ply visitors with food and drink.
For the holiday shopping season, malls are hosting gingerbread decorating sessions, visits from the Grinch — Dr. Seuss’s beloved Christmas villain-turned-softie — and ugly Christmas sweater nights.
Temporary ice skating rinks and magical winter decor are also being used to draw customers intent on an in-person holiday experience.
Wal-Mart Stores plans to throw more than 20,000 “holiday parties” at which children can pose for “selfies with Santa.”
“All of these retailers are desperate to get people into their stores,” said analyst Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, who added a note of caution about all the promotions.
“Whether they work or not is open to debate.”
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