Some retailers offer 'Black Friday' deals online

November 23, 2009 (CHICAGO)

Some holiday sales have already started.

Nervous retailers are trying to reel in consumers with deep discounts at a time Americans are less willing to open their wallets.

The trend that's taking shape for the holiday shopping season this year is quality over quantity.

The recession is prompting the majority of shoppers to spend the same amount of money, or even less, on gifts this year compared to last year. That caution from consumers is a challenge retailers are trying to overcome by turning to social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. There, shoppers can see previews of Black Friday discounts and are encouraged to shop store Web sites.

Sears is showcasing early holiday savings with its 'Black Friday Now' program where shoppers can get discounts every Saturday from now until Christmas.

"You can go online and purchase them and have it delivered to your home or pick them up in," said Harvey Isom, Sears. "The dollar only goes so far and it's important how we spend our dollar this year."

With a higher percentage of consumers doing their holiday shopping online, Target also has online discounts that apply to a wider variety of merchandise. It reflects the trend of shoppers to buy more practical gifts.

"It's spread out more. Not just to toys and electronics but there's a big push on clothing," said Henry Mata, Target. "It's our job to have the right things on hand."

While getting those doorbuster discounts from the comfort of your home may sound attractive, there is still a catch. Shoppers need to get up very early in the morning, because otherwise the merchandise may be sold out.

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