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Consumer Watch: Black Friday is becoming a week long event

Shopping seasons starts early with many retailers launching their sales on Thanksgiving Day (KOKH).

Retail trends are changing, and it is affecting what retailers expect on Black Friday.

With the rise of Cyber Monday, and a series of lower than expected sales for some retail giants, Black Friday is making some sellers nervous, but in a study from the National Retail Federation, most Americans say they will be doing the bulk of their shopping on Black Friday.

Shopping after the Thanksgiving meal may be about can't miss deals, but for many people it's really about tradition.

If you are planning on doing any of this basically competitive shopping, Sean Rose with the Better Business Bureau of Central Oklahoma says having a plan is essential to your shopping success.

Rose recommends knowing what you are hoping to get, and knowing where those items are in the store ahead of time to avoid getting stuck in lines.

  • Have a budget you will stick to, and consider putting your planned purchases on a credit card.

“With the financial institution behind them there's a lot more protections for you as a consumer especially if you buy something online and it might not be what you wanted,” says Rose, Director of Community Outreach with the BBB of Central Oklahoma.

  • Be sure to pay off the debt in full, soon.
  • If you are looking for early online deals or coupons, make sure any offers you get are the real deal.

“Even if you get an email alert, and it looks like it is from the store, make sure that you actually hover over and see what the link says,” says Rose.

In recent years, consumers have extended their Black Friday shopping experiences into the weekend, so if you're skipping the lines, you're not the only one.

Because of the shift in when shoppers are hitting the stores, expect to see some sales extended throughout the weekend and into Cyber Monday. Retail stores continue to try to compete with the web hoping the 'get it now mentality' will be enough to keep drawing people out of the house.

It is important to point out that though many consumers say they will be doing the bulk of their shopping on Black Friday, it is unclear whether that means in person or online. Online shopping can still be a revenue driver for larger companies but will have a negative impact on the brick and mortar establishments that employs people.

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