Target plans to open at 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day to kick of its Black Friday promotional efforts and will follow up with additional deals that become available at 4 a.m.
The company is also rewarding its REDcard holders by allowing them early access to select Black Friday sale items at Target.com.
"We heard from our guests that they look forward to kicking off their holiday shopping with deal-hunting on Thanksgiving night. Opening at 9 p.m. gives Target’s Black Friday guests a more convenient way to create an after-dinner shopping event that the entire family can enjoy," said Kathee Tesija, Target’s EVP of merchandising. "Guests can shop with confidence throughout the entire holiday weekend knowing that Target offers incredible value on items for decorating, entertaining and gift giving."
Target is among a growing group of retailers who in recent years have moved forward Black Friday opening times to the point where it became inevitable stores would open on Thanksgiving Day. Walmart stores begin offering Black Friday deals at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day and like Target attributed the decision to customer demand.
The other major structural change that has taken place around Black Friday is the early release of deals. Once tightly guarded, the digital era changed everything when several years ago deals began to leak out. Now, retailers take the proactive approach and simply pre-announce their special offers.
In Target’s case, some of the offers include a Apex brand 32 inch LCD TV for $147, a Nikon L310 digital camera for $99, a Nook Simple Touch e-reader for $49 and Beats headphones for $179.
Under the guise of "bonus doorbusters," Target has promotional pricing on other key items that kicks in at 4 a.m. and a special gift card incentive. Items offered at 4 a.m. include a Samsung 50 inch 1080p LED HDTV for $699, a Canon A3400 Camera bundle for $89 and Leapfrog Explorer Software for $15.
From 4 a.m. on November 23, until noon, those who spend $50 or more on apparel, accessories or home products will received a $10 Target gift card.
For those shoppers who want an even earlier head start, Target is making 20 promotional items available on it Web site beginning on Wednesday, November 21, but only to those who hold one of the company’s REDcards.