‘More pre-Black Friday sale events than ever before’
Employees of big box retailers in the United States are generally subjected to the same annual Thanksgiving routine: Do all the family stuff early in the day because they’re off to work in the evenings. The Black Friday creep gets earlier and earlier every year, as each store tries to set the pace for how soon people can shop their sales.
In a bit of refreshing news, GameStop employees will have the full Thanksgiving holiday free this year. GameStop has revealed its Black Friday-centric plans, and it includes all stores in the United States being closed on Thanksgiving.
There are likely a couple strategic reasons for the closure. GameStop has announced that it’ll host “more pre-Black Friday sale events than ever before,” although it hasn’t revealed any of the deals yet. Also, with the pandemic very much still in progress, GameStop is probably (rightly) predicting that in-store traffic will be lower than during normal years. All the hustle and bustle of jam-packed consumerism isn’t as cute when there’s a contagious virus on the loose.
It’s the right outcome, especially from a company who has a very recent history of doing the wrong thing. In March, GameStop circulated an internal memo to employees directing them to refuse compliance with local orders to shut down at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The reasoning was that GameStop and all its video game hardware and software should be classified as “essential retail.”
The logic seems to be that GameStop is hoping to spread sales out over a longer timeline rather than just chasing a spike on Black Friday. We’ll see if it can resist putting all of its best deals on actual Black Friday. Unlikely but maybe. It’s not like there will be any new consoles available to lure customers in anyway.