Target is the latest major retailer to announce that it will no longer open its stores on Thanksgiving, allowing its workers and shoppers to enjoy the holiday at home together.
When the company closed its stores on Thanksgiving last year, in order to reduce crowding during the pandemic, they found that their bottom line didn’t suffer at all.
In fact, by beginning holiday sales early, November and December sales increased by 8.2% over 2020 sales, reported the Associated Press.
“What started as a temporary measure driven by the pandemic is now our new standard — one that recognizes our ability to deliver on our guests’ holiday wishes both within and well beyond store hours,” Target CEO Brian Cornell wrote to employees.
Complaints about opening stores on Thanksgiving
The re-closing of stores on Thanksgiving appears to be one positive outcome of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the last decade or so, Target along with other retailers decided to extend Black Friday shopping by opening on Thanksgiving Day.
Companies faced criticism for the move, with complaints that store workers and their families could not spend the holiday together. Over the years, some of them made the decision to shut their doors.
This year, in announcing that they would stay closed, several retailers noted that they did so to allow their workers to spend time with their loved ones, and because they got a positive response from their customers last year.
Kohl’s, for example, issued a statement in June, explaining that they decided to close for the holiday because of the ”positive response from last year’s closure on Thanksgiving Day, as well as evolving preferences in how and when customers want to shop during the holiday season.”
Costco and REI have had a long-standing policy of staying closed on Thanksgiving. REI is once again closing its 170 stores on both Thanksgiving and Black Friday, so its employees can have two paid holidays. The move is part of the companies #OptOutside social media campaign.
According to the website, BlackFriday.com, the following businesses announced they will be closed on Thanksgiving this year:
Academy Sports + Outdoors
Bed Bath & Beyond
BJ’s Wholesale Club
Costco (always closed on Thanksgiving)
Dick’s Sporting Goods