Retailers get creative offering customers good deals

December 11, 2009 7:41:15 PM PST
There's some encouraging economic news from the Commerce Department. It says retail sales for the month of November were up 1.3 percent -- that's more than double what most economists expected, and retailers are making shopping easier for customers this season.

Beginning today through the weekend, retail giant Target is bringing the store downtown -- well at least their top 50 gifts. It's appropriately named "Target-To-Go." You see an item you want through the window, check it off, pay and go.

"It took about five minutes to walk here, and it'll take five minute to get it and five minutes to go home. Can't beat that," said San Francisco shopper Meg Lang.

For most men it's a big time saver, and shall we say, a no-brainer.

"I don't have to go all the way out to Target way out in Colma. It's a time saver. It's really a pain to wrap gifts," said San Francisco shopper Patrick Lew.

In Corte Madera, Toys 'R Us has an express store to make it easier on holiday shoppers.

It's another example of how retail stores are employing new methods to lure customers and boost sales. According to USF business professor Eugene Muscat, retailers started offering big sales earlier than in previous years.

"It tells us that there is merchandise that really has to be moved," he said.

And it seemed to work on Black Friday and Black Saturday.

Shopper Trak measures retail traffic around the nation. They saw a 1 percent increase in sales on those two days combined when compared to last year.

But will it hold?

"Last year the targeted item to the consumer hovered around $50 and I see it this year, the retailers are targeting around $30 to get you to buy the minimum gift," said Muscat.

"It's not in the budget to take care of the whole family. The family is too big, the budget is not big enough," said San Francisco shopper Danielle Turner.

Still economists say that retailers and retail stores will have a good season. These great values continue throughout the entire season and that's always good news for consumers, and hopefully in the end, for the entire industry.


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