The Home Depot is the latest retailer to get a jump on Black Friday, announcing it will stretch the event through most of November. It’s also released its holiday deals circular.
The 18-page ad lists deals that will begin Nov. 6 and last through Dec. 2, if supplies last that long. Many of the deals will only be available online as company officials hope to keep stores from becoming overcrowded amidst a pandemic.
Among the deals are home furnishings, power tools, and holiday decor. The ad promotes a wide range of tools and 40 percent off some appliances.
Some prices have been marked down more than 50 percent, including a $199 decorated Christmas tree that will sell for $79. A 270-piece tool set from Husky will go for $99, significantly less than the $530 Home Depot would charge if all the pieces were purchased separately.
Home Depot stores will be open on the Friday after Thanksgiving, but in an interview with USA Today, CEO Ted Decker said the company is spreading out the bargains in hopes people will spread out as well.
“Not wanting to drive that sort of traffic and crowds to our stores, we are extending the holiday period,” Decker said. “We will still have values, but they will start in early November.”
Everybody’s doing it
Home Depot joins Amazon, Lowe’s, Target, and Walmart -- among other retailers -- in encouraging early holiday shopping. Last week, Walmart released its holiday ad circular, with deals on toys, electronics, and apparel.
One reason for the early push is concern that some items could be scarce later in the holiday season. The Wall Street Journal reports that many manufacturers are having trouble keeping up with demand, and that if a new refrigerator is on your wishlist, there may be fewer choices if you wait until just before the holidays.
Apparently, the shortages are not just related to supply chain issues caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Because so many consumers have recently undertaken home improvement projects, The Journal reports paint producers are having difficulty finding enough cans to meet demand.
Smaller selection of cars
There has also been no letup in demand for new cars, which could be in short supply by the time mid-December rolls around. Auto assembly plants shut down for several weeks during the spring and have had a hard time catching up to demand as consumers have abandoned ride-sharing and mass transit during the pandemic.
Another reason to shop early is potential delay in delivery. With the anticipated surge in online shopping this holiday season, delivery companies will be working at full capacity and beyond.
Jonathan Gold, vice president of supply chain and customs policy for the National Retail Federation, recently told CBS News that the surge in online orders is overwhelming the delivery system, beginning with Amazon’s Prime Day earlier this month.
“The capacity doesn’t exist to address all the increase in sales that we saw,” he said.