Local stores see strong turnout for Black Friday

WTAP News @ 11
Published: Nov. 25, 2022 at 9:14 PM EST
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - Black Friday is a big day for both consumers and stores alike.

WTAP checked in with a couple locally-owned shops to see if this year lived up to the hype.

It’s a hallmark of the holiday season and, according to Mulberry Lane Country Store and Wit & Whimzy, shoppers turned out.

Mulberry Lane Owner Tina Salmans said, “The sales have been really robust. We’ve had a lot of traffic through the store - a lot of people and it’s nice this year to see their friendly smiling faces without covered up - being covered up by a mask.”

Wit & Whimzy Owner Laura Pytlik said, “We were relieved that we didn’t have the rain today and so the weather really made a nice difference and we’ve had a really nice turn-out today so far.”

It’s a different experience than two years ago, during the early days of Covid.

Pytlik remembered, “Two years ago it was kind of difficult because we had to limit the number of people that could come inside and we had the masks and regulations. Last year was actually a really huge year because people were just - they were out…,”

Pytlik said 2022 is continuing last year’s wave.

Salmans has also felt the shift.

“..., I think that it’s back to that…back to the old-fashioned Black Fridays where people come in and they bring all their families that are visiting from out of town...,” she said.

While both owners say supply chain issues linger, it hasn’t had a notable impact on either store’s Black Friday.

Inflation, however, influenced Pytlik’s strategy.

“We’ve offered a few more sales today because we knew people are looking for a bargain,” she said.

Black Friday is more than a day for deals and steals. Salmans said it’s a day many stores rely on.

“Black Friday is really important to all small businesses because it’s that fourth quarter sales that really bring through - especially a small business gift shop - gift shops in general I guess of any size - they depend on that fourth quarter sales to really see them through the year,” she said.

Salmans added that the community’s support makes a big difference.

“We are so blessed with the community that supports its small businesses that I think that has really helped us, you know, maintain our level of traffic we’re used to on Black Friday,” she said.

Some locally owned businesses have told us Small Business Saturday - which is this Saturday - is an even bigger day for them.