Walmart stores open even earlier for 'Black Friday' sales

Black Friday shoppers chase deals at Walmart.
Black Friday shoppers chase deals at Walmart. Matthew Staver, Bloomberg/Getty

Night owls will get the best deals this holiday season by skipping a turkey dinner.

Wal-Mart, the nation’s largest retailer, will open its stores at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving night, two hours earlier than last year. Later in the evening and into the wee hours of the next day, Walmart will unleash additional sale items.

Duncan Mac Naughton, chief merchandising and marketing officer for Walmart U.S., said the store wanted to give shoppers low prices “no matter our customer’s shopping preference—whether it is to stay up late or shop early.”

The retailer is following a larger trend of stores opening even earlier, in an effort to grab younger shoppers who may not be early risers. Last year, several stores shifted their hours in order to match the competition. This year, Macy’s, Best Buy and Kohl’s will open at midnight Friday.

“They are trying to figure out a way to get more shoppers in the front door,” said Britt Beemer, CEO of America’s Research Group.

Beemer said next year, consumers can expect stores to open even earlier on Thanksgiving, perhaps as early as 6 p.m.

“It may be too late to do it this year, but they’ll do it next year,” Beemer said.

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