Walmart expands Black Friday shopping

Wednesday, Walmart announced a program called the “New Black Friday,” taking the largest shopping day of the year to the next level in a statement released on its corporate website.

“Days – not hours – of deep discounts on the hottest gifts kick off online Thanksgiving morning and lead right into the store’s first event at 6 p.m. The retailer’s “New Black Friday” playbook for 2014 includes five key elements,” according to the statement.

“Black Friday is no longer about waking up at the crack of dawn to stand in long lines and hope for the best. At Walmart, it has become a family shopping tradition where everyone shops at some point throughout the weekend,” said Duncan Mac Naughton, chief merchandising officer of Walmart in the U.S. “This year, we’re blowing it out with five days of deals in store and online. We’ll have crazy low prices on the gifts our customers want.”

Walmart served 22 million customers on Thanksgiving Day in 2013 according to their own accounting and with this year’s Black Friday deals beginning Thursday and lasting through Monday, Walmart is predicting that more families will  take advantage of the retailer’s prices on electronics, toys, kitchen appliances, bedding and other popular products.

Along with the expanded shopping Walmart is also continuing what it calls a 1-hour Guarantee, allowing shoppers to purchase items that will be shipped to the store and received before Christmas.

“We’re using our entire supply chain to deliver for our customers in a way no other retailer can,” Mac Naughton said. “Our guarantee ensures our customers get the product they came for and enables us to organize the store in a way that makes the shopping experience better for everyone.”

“Customers in the designated areas of the store between 6 and 7 p.m. on Nov. 27 can purchase the gift they want and either take it home that night or receive it at a store before Christmas,” according to the Walmart website.

1-hour Guarantee items

50” Class LED HDTV for $218 ($180 savings)

Vizio 65” Class Smart LED HDTV for $648 ($350 savings)

Apple iPad Mini 16GB with Wi-Fi for $199 with a $30 Walmart Gift Card ($70 value)

Xbox One Halo “The Master Chief Collection” Bundle for $329 with a $30 Walmart Gift Card

RCA 7” Google Play Wi-Fi Tablet for $29 (special buy)

Samsung Galaxy Ace Style on Straight Talk Wireless for $29 ($100 savings)

LG Blu-ray Disc Player for $35 (special buy)

Beats by Dr. Dre Wireless Headphones for $149 ($130 savings)

HP Intel Celeron Touch Laptop for $249 (special buy)

Following customer feedback with the program, this year Walmart has also simplified the process.

“We’ve taken significant steps to improve the 1-Hour Guarantee process from beginning to end. It’s simple and seamless,” Mac Naughton said.

The Walmart in Hays is open all day on Thanksgiving, and the Black Friday deals begin at the local store at 6 p.m.

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