What Black Friday shopping is really like

Shopping on Black Friday at City Creek Center was very different than expected, it was almost just like any other day at the mall.

This year’s Black Friday shopping at City Creek Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, may have been one of the most relaxed Black Friday’s ever — it was almost eerie, sort of like a ghost town. It wasn’t until 8 on Friday morning, that the doors of City Creek Center opened. One of the early bird shoppers, Annie, said that “being one of the first people to get into the mall is such an advantage, I get first pick on discounted items in my favorite stores.”

Black Friday is one of the only days of the year where many big name stores like Macy’s, Sears, Dillard’s and Nordstrom have major discounts. People wait in line for hours to score big deals on their favorite store items. However, this year was not as busy as some in the past, or at least that’s how it used to be. The mall wasn’t even busy until about 2 pm.

Manager Erica Crosby at Alex & Ani described the day as a “letdown.” The store was projected to make around $67,000 dollars on Black Friday, but, with low amounts of walk-in traffic, they were behind their final goal by about $20,000. “For the last two years we had lines out the door. This year, we aren’t even half as busy,” Crosby said. “And it’s not just us either. It’s Papyrus, Lush, Pandora and even Steve Madden.”

With having stores at City Creek being over-staffed, open early, and close late on Black Friday, people might not think it is fair to go out and shop on this once a year event. It is not necessarily fair to the people that work on Black Friday if the store is not making a profit, and it is not fair to the public to have to shop in a crowded mall in the freezing cold to only get special deals once a year. Maybe some stores will consider having better deals year round to improve profit and a better shopping experience.

Being one of the biggest shopping days of the year, Black Friday can really change your wallet, and holiday gifting with a lot of remarkable savings. However, some stores in the mall have the exact same discount as they did last year. Alex & Ani, American Eagle, Sunglass Hut, Anthropology and J.Crew had the same discounts as the previous year, and they weren’t all that significant. This year, majority of stores have their deals online as well, plus free shipping. If people want to stay at home in their pajamas and shop online, they still get the benefit of Black Friday savings without dealing with crowds of people and cold weather. Jackie, a shopper at City Creek Center said, “most of my family and friends shop online instead of coming out with me to shop. They don’t like to be in big crowds and wait in long lines, they think it’s a lot easier shopping online, but I like the chaos of it all.” Jackie also discussed that she was familiar about the lack of sales but still wanted to shop nontheless. While some people, like Jackie, actually enjoy the craziness of Black Friday, some might think Black Friday is just a crazed scene of intense shoppers.

Not only has this year’s Black Friday changed the way people shop on this day, it also has extended to the following Monday and sometimes Tuesday as well. By doing this, there is no rush to get everything at one time. Peter, a sales associate at the store Lush, said that “I love that our store extends our deals, it makes it so Black Friday isn’t as insane and not so many people come in at one time. [Extending deals] makes it so the other staff members aren’t so overwhelmed and exhausted by the end of their shift.” Some people prefer to spend their holiday weekend solely with their loved ones instead of going out to shop. Therefore, Black Friday deals are now extended, a great change to this once a year shopping event.

Shopping on Black Friday will continue to change every year with stores starting their sales early and extending them into the next week. Online shopping for Black Friday has become a huge improvement and a time-saver for many. Black Friday shopping this year was out of the norm, and maybe it will change back to its crazy ways in the future. However, as of this year, shopping at City Creek was not as much of a hassle like it has been in the past, it was just a regular day at the mall.