Thanksgiving is just a few days away, and you know what that means.
It’s time for the annual ritual in which thousands and thousands of people drag their lawn chairs to the local Wal-Mart and camp out for hours and hours until the stores open. Then they trample each other in a rush to save a few bucks on the Snuggie mom wants for the holidays.
Yes, we’re talking about the aptly named Black Friday, a window of despair into the souls of our Cheapskate Nation.
Google, as always, thinks it has a better way. The company yesterday announced it has added new features to its Google Shopping service.
Turns out, these are features we desperately need.
According to Google, we can expect see our “fellow shoppers checking for deals on their smartphones while braving the lines and crowds at the mall.” Nearly half of the coveted 25-34 year-old age group, use their mobile phones while standing in line at a store to see how much they’re overpaying, Google said.
If the guy in line in front of you at the register is holding a giant Ninjago Lego set and quietly sobbing, now you know why.
Google is not the only source of statistics that shed light on this holiday commerce horror show.
This infographic from Nextopia notes that the most popular shopping times for Black Friday 2013 broke down as follows:
- 13 percent before midnight (aka Thanksgiving).
- 11 percent at midnight.
- 6 percent from 1 a.m. to 3 a.m.
- 14 percent from 4 a.m. to 6 a.m.
Because, why sleep or hang out with your annoying family when you could be hitting refresh on your browser again and again to find the cheapest smart crockpot for your spouse?
There is a glimmer of hope that we are, to a degree, rethinking this craziness. It comes from, of all places, the National Retail Federation’s annual holiday shopping forecast. When it comes to shopping on Thanksgiving, the report predicts:
“Of the 61.1 percent who will or may shop in stores and online over the weekend, 18.3 percent (25.6 million) say they will check out retailers’ Thanksgiving Day deals and shop Thursday, down from the preliminary 23.5 percent last year.”
We’ll see if we truly manage to restrain ourselves amid the upcoming frenzied shopping season.
For now, sadly, the focus on deals is the way of the world.
In the days leading up to Thanksgiving, rather than searching for yummy turkey recipes or “things we are thankful for,” it turns out “27 percent of shoppers have already begun hunting for Black Friday deals online,” Google reveals.
What are the other top shopping search trends? According to Google:
- “what time do stores open on black friday”
- “what time does black friday start”
- “when does black friday end”
- “what to buy on black friday”
- “how can I live a more meaningful life?”
Ha, ha. Just kidding about that last one.