Mobile deals set to lure shoppers stuck in line

Source: Stephanie Clifford, New York Times

As retailers battle to draw customers into their stores on Black Friday, online merchants are plotting a cunning ambush — offering an arsenal of mobile-only deals intended to pick off shoppers as they wait in line. The Gilt Groupe, for example, which operates several Web sites, usually offers sales at noon. But on Friday, it will promote mobile exclusives at 6 a.m. — precisely when shoppers are expected to be crammed into checkout lines at some of its high-end competitors. “We haven’t had the ability to compete effectively with Black Friday, and now we do,” said Andy Page, president of the Gilt Groupe, who predicted that poaching in-store shoppers would lead to Gilt’s best Black Friday ever. The aggressive promotions by Gilt, Amazon, HSN and other online companies are creating a frenzy among traditional retailers, who have counted the Friday after Thanksgiving as the busiest shopping day of the year.

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