Best Buy revealing its Black Friday deals early

  • Article by: WENDY LEE , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 14, 2011 - 9:32 PM

Traditional method of keeping everything secret until Turkey Day is being abandoned as big retailers jockey for position.

In a bid to lure shoppers to its stores and website during the Thanksgiving holiday, Best Buy is revealing Black Friday doorbuster deals and will be unveiling other specials as the holiday nears, the retailer said Monday.

Bargains at its stores will include a $299 Samsung laptop and a $199 42-inch Sharp LCD high-definition television, according to Best Buy's website.

The Richfield-based company's move to reveal some of its best Black Friday deals is a reversal of retailers' long-standing practice of closely guarding doorbuster specials until Thanksgiving Day because of concerns that other competitors will match their prices.

But with the prevalence of Black Friday websites that post leaked store ads early, and some stores upping the ante by opening on Thanksgiving Day, more retailers are voluntarily previewing some of their best Black Friday bargains.

Britt Beemer of America's Research Group says he believes this will help Best Buy compete with discount retailer Wal-Mart, which is opening to offer deals at 10 p.m. on Thanksgiving. Best Buy is opening at midnight on Black Friday.

Beemer said 40 percent of Best Buy's customers also shop at Wal-Mart.

"They are probably trying to freeze their customers from going anywhere else," Beemer said. Best Buy is "probably worried that Wal-Mart is stealing some of their customers."

Best Buy declined to comment on Beemer's remarks.

Best Buy also said on Monday that it will be showing "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2" on an outdoor screen and giving out snacks and refreshments for consumers waiting in line at select locations on Black Friday, starting at 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving night.

Other retailers, such as Kmart, also revealed Black Friday specials on Monday. Sears will unveil its deals Tuesday, said Julie Kent, a spokeswoman for Sears. Meanwhile, Sears Outlet is telling its customers that if they bring in a Black Friday ad from a competitor prior to Nov. 30, they will match the price if it is the same model, brand and color.

Beemer said retailers already have their early-bird specials set for Black Friday.

"At this point, everything is planned out," Beemer said. "There is nothing they can do at this point, except kind of stare at each other."

Wendy Lee • 612-673-1712

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