Black Friday as we know it is about to become a whole lot different at Home Depot stores. In response to the coronavirus pandemic, the home improvement company will offer Black Friday discounts for two months, beginning in early November through December.
“For the first time ever, our Black Friday prices will be available throughout the holiday season. Savings will start in early November and last through December, both in-store and on homedepot.com. Say goodbye to one day of frenzied shopping and enjoy Black Friday savings all season long without the stress and crowds,” Home Depot said on its website.
The retailer is seeking to “reinvent” Black Friday to reduce stress for consumers who typically rush to stores in droves to grab the best deals.
The company is putting the safety of its customers first this holiday season by pushing shopping online. Home Depot is attempting to nudge customers toward its mobile app by putting promotions there first.
“For the first time, the Home Depot mobile app users will have exclusive access to view deals in November before they go live online. You can download the Home Depot mobile app to your iPhone, iPad or Android to save time, money and stay organized. Use the app’s Product Locator feature to check inventory at your local store and find what you need fast this holiday season,” said Home Depot.
The company also emphasized its in-store pickup and home delivery options in its announcement.
Walmart, Target, and Best Buy have said their stores will start offering deals for the holiday season earlier than previous years to reduce crowds amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to CNN, Black Friday has been losing its relevance as a single-day shopping event for the past few years.
“Black Friday has definitely transitioned more into a digital affair in the past five years. The focal point is not that single day anymore. It’s an event spread out over several days,” said Neil Saunders, a retail analyst and managing director at GlobalData Retail.
In addition to changing the length of Black Friday, Home Depot is collaborating with Pinterest to inspire shoppers to make DIY projects and meaningful, homemade gifts.
Home Depot is among several other stores taking extra precautions this holiday season. While Home Depot has always closed its doors on Thanksgiving day, Walmart also announced they will do the same for the first time in more than 30 years.
Home Depot’s emphasis on online shopping for the holiday season comes after its digital sales doubled during the second quarter. At U.S. Home Depot stores open at least a year, sales rose 25 percent in the quarter. In addition to increasing sales, customers spent more, with the average purchases up by roughly 10 percent year over year.
Many other stores have also seen jumps to the number of consumers going online for products. Best Buy had considerable growth in online second-quarter sales. Shopify, which provides software for e-commerce retailers, appears to be one of the pandemics’ biggest winners with 97 percent growth year over year.