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The pandemic keeps Black Friday on Friday this year

For Walmart, it's the first time since the 1980's that the company shut down all of its stores on Thanksgiving.

Posted: Nov 26, 2020 7:26 PM
Updated: Nov 26, 2020 9:37 PM

EUGENE, Ore.-- With the holiday shopping season here, the pandemic is changing how consumers shop on Black Friday.

Over the years, large national retailers like Walmart, Target, and Best Buy opened their doors Thanksgiving afternoon.

This year those stores chose to stay closed on the holiday.

For Walmart, it's the first time since the 1980's that the company shut down all of its stores on Thanksgiving.

Brad Loftus, a senior partner at Boston Consulting, told ABC News companies are doing their best to keep their customers safe.

"Most retailers are trying to avoid a massive spike of people in their stores," Loftus said. "They're trying to move more of their sales and spread the sales fees out of a greater portion of time."

Even though Black Friday has been shortened, the National Retail Foundation said consumers will spend more this year than they did in 2019.

The organization projects shoppers will spend over $730 billion dollars, up nearly 4% from last year.

More than half of the shopping is expected to be online.

With a shorter holiday shopping season, Loftus said companies started offering their Black Friday deals earlier online and they're going to extend them well into Cyber Monday.

"Retailers are really trying to get the orders earlier as there's a very small window between Black Friday and Christmas and they want to make sure that they're their orders are delivered on time and meeting customer expectations," Loftus said.

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Data is updated nightly.

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