Since 1952, the Friday after Thanksgiving has been acknowledged as the busiest shopping day of the year. Soon the day came to be known as ‘Black Friday,’ and other shopping-related holidays – ‘Small Business Saturday’ and ‘Cyber Monday’ – were added to the mix. The newest day of note to grow out of the Thanksgiving shopping weekend heralds Christmas as the season of giving – ‘Giving Tuesday.’
In its November/December 2019 issue, South Dakota Magazine reported on the ‘less-harried tradition called the South Dakota Day of Giving. It’s an opportunity for nonprofits to creatively raise cash and awareness for their good causes in one 24-hour burst.’ More than 500 nonprofits in South Dakota are participating in the 2019 South Dakota Day of Giving on Giving Tuesday, December 3, 2019 from 12:00 a.m. to 11:59 p.m.
First observed in 2010, Small Business Saturday is a counterpart to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Small Business Saturday encourages holiday shoppers to patronize brick and mortar businesses that are small and local.
A University of Michigan study explored the economic impact of shopping at home and lists the following benefits: job creation, retaining money in the community, contributions to charity, preserving the community’s uniqueness, more choice for consumers, reduced environmental impact, better customer service, and saved tax dollars. Small businesses donate more than twice as much per sales dollar to local non-profits, events, and teams than discount retailers.
Cyber Monday was invented in 2005 by the National Retail Federation's division Shop.org because retailers began noticing that consumers unable to take advantage of Black Friday sales often shopped for bargains online the Monday after Thanksgiving.
Many big box stores offer highly promoted, deep discounts on big ticket items and open very early in order to lure shoppers on Black Friday. Anybody walking into a discount store in the past several months has observed ‘Christmas creep,’ the merchandising phenomenon in which retailers introduce Christmas-themed merchandise or decorations before the traditional start of the holiday shopping season, in some instances, as early as September.