Amazon.com is starting its holiday shopping season nearly a full month before retailers’ traditional day-after-Thanksgiving promotions, offering “Black Friday” deals beginning this Saturday. The e-commerce giant launched a countdown Thursday that it said will feature thousands of deals, including two “Deals of the Day” every day from Nov. 1 through Dec. 22.
Over the past few years, retailers have tried to lure customers with expanded sales events over an entire week rather than one day like Black Friday or Cyber Monday. And brick-and-mortar retailers like Wal-Mart and Macy's have made a splash this year with plans to open on Thanksgiving night, a mere six hours before Black Friday.
Amazon’s early holiday deals could alleviate shipping bottlenecks by spreading out online orders. Last year, thousands of U.S. customers didn’t receive packages on time that were ordered only a day or two before Christmas, due to bad weather and an influx of orders that overwhelmed package couriers.
“Starting in November, millions of holiday shoppers come to Amazon hunting for the best deals and that one perfect gift,” said Amazon Traffic VP Steve Shure in a statement. “This year, we will have more than 15,000 hand-selected, limited-time promotions on hot products.”
Those products include 40 percent off certain Star Wars and Disney princess toys, $150 off the Canon EOS Rebel T5i DSLR camera and 50 percent off some Thanksgiving cookware like crockpots.
Amazon also said customers can add products from Twitter onto their Amazon Wish Lists and announced new perks for Amazon Prime members, including early access to deals.