Black Friday yields mixed results

According to estimates by the National Retail Association, more than 226 million shoppers spent their Black Friday (Nov. 25) either shopping in stores or going online.More Americans than ever before were hunting for bargains over the course of the three-day weekend.The national average of money spent was up by nearly $40, coming in at $398.However, Columbia City businesses gave mixed reviews of 2011’s most famous of shopping days.For some, the day after Thanksgiving generates increased revenue, despite many retailers having stock listed at bargain pricing.Kyle Meinika, co-owner of Sears in Columbia City, said the store had its best day in the last two years.“We had a lot of door-busters. We opened at 4 a.m. and we had people waiting by the door. It was a good start,” Meinika said.Meinika also said that the good sales continued throughout the weekend.Sears pulled in a near 65 percent increase in revenue from last year.According to Meinika, the outcome wasn’t a big surprise.“Black Friday is literally the biggest day of the year for appliances, bar none,” said Meinika. “There is no better day to purchase an appliance.”The NRF reported that 24 percent of Black Friday shoppers were at stores that opened at midnight, an almost 10 percent increase from 2010.ShopperTrak, a service that gathers data from 25,000 outlets across the country, reported Black Friday’s overall sales of $11.4 billion was a record setting day.Customer counts climbed 5.1 percent from 2010, and 2011 marked the largest year-to-year increase in sales since 2007.___For a more in depth look at this story, see the Dec. 2 issue of The Post and Mail. Don't have a subscription? Call (260) 244-5153 or subscribe to our e-edition. For breaking news, sports updates and additional coverage, bookmark the homepage and find us on facebook.