Black Friday is quickly becoming a shopping tradition in Canada, but that isn’t changing Canadians’ plans to hop over the border for holiday deals in the U.S., says a new survey from consulting firm Accenture.
Sixty per cent of respondents in the survey said they plan to shop at U.S. stores on Black Friday, either online or in person, despite the appearance of the once-a-year shopping event in Canadian stores over the past few years.
“Canadians feel retailers in Canada are not doing enough to compete with U.S. stores on Black Friday,” Accenture said in a statement.
“When Canadians surveyed were asked when they believed they would see the best deals of the holiday season (either in Canada or in the United States), Black Friday in the U.S. was cited by almost half (42 percent), while less than a quarter (23 percent) cited Black Friday in Canada.”
That means Canadian retailers have to step up their game, Accenture says. The consulting form notes that many Canadian stores, such as Holt Renfrew and The Bay, are already “devoting more of their fourth-quarter push” to Black Friday, instead of Boxing Day, the traditional day for holiday deals in Canada, which falls after Christmas.
The most popular cross-border shopping item is clothing, cited by 69 per cent of survey respondents. Forty-one per cent of cross-border shoppers plan on buying toys, while 34 per cent are eyeing home electronics and 30 per cent want to buy video games or consoles.
Canadian retailers aren’t blind to the threat posed to them by cross-border shopping. This year’s Canadian Black Friday events look to be bigger than ever, with some shopping malls following U.S. retailers’ lead and opening early on Black Friday.
But with retailers having a hard time coming close to matching U.S. prices in Canada (witness, for example, Canadians’ wholesale disappointment to discover Target Canada won’t be matching U.S. prices), some are taking a more direct approach.
Yellow Pages Group last month launched an initiative trying to convince shoppers, particularly around Greater Toronto, to stay home for the holiday shopping frenzy.
The “Shop the Neighbourhood” initiative has the backing of 50 business improvement areas (BIAs) near and around Toronto.
Shoppers “forget that they actually vote on what stores stay open and what stores close every time they go shopping," Ontario Deputy Premier Deb Matthews said at the Shop the Neighbourhood launch last month.
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The Details: Nov. 29 - Dec. 1 What You Get: Doors open from 7 a.m. until 11 p.m. on Nov. 29, guests who spend $75 or more storewide on Nov. 29 will receive a $15 Target GiftCard redeemable on their next purchase (one GiftCard per guest). Target REDcard cardholders will also receive an additional 5% off almost everything in the store. Target will also have deals on everything from electronics, toys, kitchenwear and up to 70 per cent off women’s, men’s and kids’ apparel and accessories. Shop <a href="http://flyers.target.ca/flyers/targetcanada-weeklyad?type=1&locale=en&flyer_run_id=13425#!/flyers/targetcanada-weeklyad?flyer_run_id=13425" target="_blank">here</a>.
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The Details: Nov. 27 - Dec. 2 What You Get: 50% off prescription sunglasses from Nov. 27 to Dec. 2 and buy two accessories and get a third accessory of equal or lesser value free until Dec. 31. Shop <a href="http://www.lenscrafters.ca/lc-ca/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/OrphanView?catalogId=11652&langId=-1&storeId=10852&page=BlackFridayOffers&cid=cpc:GL000000:Black_Friday:General_Terms" target="_blank">here</a>.
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The Details: Nov. 28 - Dec. 2 What You Get: Customers get a 20% off incentive card on every purchase between Nov 28-Dec 1, which can be used towards their next purchase between Dec 7-18. This is on top of up to 60% off Black Friday specials.
The Details: Black Friday weekend What You Get: At all 12 M locations across the GTA, customers will find Black Friday specials for $29 and under. From the season's most coveted runway trends including faux fur vests ($15), vegan leather moto jackets ($29), outerwear ($29) and holiday dresses ($29).
The Details: Nov. 20 - Nov. 29 What You Get: Forever 21 is offering a Black Friday pre-sale starting on Nov. 20 across Canada and online with up to 50% off select items. The retailer will also be having a Black Friday sale on Nov. 29 with special yellow tag deals on select products. The collection includes winter staples such as heavy knit sweaters, quilted faux leather bomber jackets and winter accessories starting at $3. Select locations will also offer scratch cards for 10% or 15% off purchases made in-store to the first 600 customers through the door on Black Friday.
The Details: Now, for limited time offer What You Get: 30% off sale shoes and boots plus an extra 25% off select dress shoe styles online and in stores. Shop Online <a href="http://www.aldoshoes.com/ca-eng/sale">HERE</a>
The Details: Deals are on now as part of their <a href="http://www.sears.ca/catalog/sears-days/4294557477?intid=hp_novwk22013_Marquee_Sears_Days" target="_blank">Sears Days campaign</a>. What You Get: 50% off women's and men's clothing, shoes, appliances, toys and more. Plus get free shipping to almost everywhere in Canada when you spend $99 or more Shop Online <a href="http://www.sears.ca/catalog/sears-days/4294557477?intid=hp_novwk22013_Marquee_Sears_Days">HERE</a>
The Details: Deals are being offered now through Friday, Nov. 23 What You Get: There will be flash sales and online deals at all The Bay locations. <a href="https://www.facebook.com/hudsonsbay" target="_hplink">Check out their Facebook page for full details</a>. Stores will open at 7 a.m. on Black Friday. Shop Online <a href="http://www.thebay.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/en/thebay" target="_hplink">HERE</a>
The Details: Happening now for a limited time. What You Get: 50% off select dresses, skirts, bags, pants and bags. Shop Online <a href="http://www.eluxe.ca/en/sale.html/">HERE</a>
Details: Nov. 29 to Dec. 1 What You Get: N/A
NEXT: Craziest Black Friday Moments
Black Friday Romance?
<a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/black-friday-shopping-spree-love-story-long-island-couple-article-1.414121" target="_hplink">According to the <em>New York Daily News</em></a>, two individuals have Black Friday to thank for their unique love-at-first-sight story. The two lovebirds struck up conversation while standing in line at a Long Island Kmart. The small talk turned into sweet talk as the two waited in line together for a total of seven hours before doors opened. Fast forward two years, and the couple is happily married with fond memories of the day they met, saying, "Black Friday will always be a memorable day for us. That was the day that changed our lives." (Getty photo)
Woman Shakes Up Shoppers With Death Threats
Shoppers were shaken up last year at Toys "R" Us in Wisconsin, when a woman named Lanessa Lattimore threatened to shoot shoppers who were waiting in line outside the store. A confrontation began after the woman tried to cut the line of several hundred people. <a href="http://articles.cnn.com/2010-11-26/justice/wisconsin.shopper.threat_1_gun-threat-black-friday-shopper-huge-lines?_s=PM:CRIME" target="_hplink">Lanessa told CNN</a>, "Everybody was cutting in line. But there was one girl who was threatening me, so I told her that I'd shoot her." Although no weapon was found, she was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct. (Getty photo)
Kim Kardashian: Best Black Friday Buddy?
A poll conducted by AOL back in 2009 revealed that Kim Kardashian was voted the person you'd most like to go shopping with on Black Friday, <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/gossip/online-poll-kanye-west-named-year-biggest-turkey-kim-kardashian-best-black-friday-shopper-article-1.165773" target="_hplink">as the NY Daily News reported</a>. She even beat out Victoria Beckham for the best shopping buddy title. Would you want to spend Black Friday shopping with Kim? Something tells us that the poll results would be <em>quite</em> a bit different this year... (Getty photo)
... And Kayne West, The Biggest "Turkey"?
The same AOL poll that voted Kim K. as the "best shopping buddy" also revealed that Americans think Kanye West was the biggest "turkey" of 2009... whatever that means. Bear in mind that this poll took place shortly after his Taylor Swift interruption scandal at the Grammy's that year. <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/gossip/online-poll-kanye-west-named-year-biggest-turkey-kim-kardashian-best-black-friday-shopper-article-1.165773" target="_hplink">According to the New York Daily News</a>, Kanye beat out the likes of Jon Gosselin, Levi Johnston, Spencer Pratt,and Michael Lohan. In other words, it sounds like being called a "turkey" is just a kinder way of saying "biggest D-bag." (Getty photo)
Wal-Mart Employee Trampled To Death
A tragic story took place at a Wal-Mart in Long Island in 2008. <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/29/business/29walmart.html?ref=blackfriday" target="_hplink">As the <em>New York Times</em> reported</a>, an employee by the name of Jdimytai Damour got caught amidst utter chaos in a stampede on Black Friday, resulting in his ultimate death. Sources say that Damour was literally trampled to death by crazed shoppers, although no specific individual could be called out and held responsible for the fatal accident. Wal-Mart was also slapped with a $75K fine, according to the <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/7k-fine-wal-mart-black-friday-stampede-death-article-1.404243" target="_hplink"><em>New York Daily News</em></a>.
Two Men Shot Dead At Toys "R" Us
A heated argument between two men lead to a deadly shooting at a Toys "R" Us in Palm Desert, California on the biggest sales day back in 2008. <a href="http://articles.cnn.com/2008-11-28/us/black.friday.violence_1_wal-mart-worker-fleming-busiest-shopping-days/2?_s=PM:US" target="_hplink">According to CNN</a>, police still aren't completely certain about the origin of the fight, although sources believe that it was unrelated to the timing of Black Friday sales that day. Luckily, no innocent shoppers were injured during the shooting.
Shopping Cart Heist
A strange shopping cart heist took place at a Toys "R" Us in the Bronx in 2009, <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/bronx/shopping-cart-thefts-began-black-friday-500-bronx-toys-article-1.435826" target="_hplink">the <em>New York Daily News</em> reported</a>. Thieves stole 500 shopping carts starting on Black Friday and continued to nab carts throughout the holiday season. Shoppers were left annoyed as they were forced to carry all of their purchases, since no carts were anywhere to be found. Police suspect that the carts -- which cost a hefty $200 a piece -- were either stolen by gang members to sell metal scraps for money or taken by homeless people who use them to carry their belongings. (AP Image)
Hotel Deals For The Extreme Shopper
When stores in Indianapolis had a super successful Black Friday back in 2009, hotels decided to try and take advantage of visiting shoppers by targeting the <em>eve</em> of Black Friday. <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/money/industries/retail/2010-11-14-black-friday-hotels_N.htm" target="_hplink">According to <em>USA Today</em></a>, the Conrad Hotel was among the first to notice this opportunity and advertised to serious out-of-town shoppers who planned on rising early to hit the sales. The deal offers $99 for a room on Thanksgiving night, as well as a personal shopping appointment at Nordstrom, a free coffee and a free shoeshine. Other hotels have also developed similar deals to cash in on the night of Thanksgiving, too. It sure beats camping out overnight for the doors to open in the morning. (Getty photo)
Shooting Over Flat Screen TV
Another story that will make your heart sink: the tragic shooting of a man in Queens who was shot by robbers on Black Friday back in 2009, as the<a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime/black-friday-mayhem-queens-man-shot-flat-screen-tv-thugs-t-fit-set-getaway-car-article-1.413993" target="_hplink"> <em>New York Daily News</em></a> first reported. The elderly man was walking with his new flat-screen TV in a parking lot, when robbers ruthlessly shot him dead in an attempt to steal his new purchase. However, the TV didn't fit in the trunk of their getaway car, and witnesses reported that they dumped the TV on the street as they quickly fled the scene of the crime. (Getty photo)