For the weekend after Thanksgiving, it was fairly calm at my Costco. We were steady on all three days; we hit 3,000+ members each day, but it didn’t feel tremendously busy. Supposedly, the real action was online, with a record-breaking amount spent. I can believe that.
The tides seem to have turned, retail wise. Most people complained about Costco being busy and filled with nothing but rude people. The one mention I saw of Walmart? The store was quiet, with few customers shopping. The polar opposite of Costco.
When I was under Walmart’s employ, Black Friday was huge: my first one we had lines of customers spilling out of the building and well into the parking lot. When some of us tried to get into the store, people shouted at them to get to the back of line.
My coworkers had to pull out their vests and badges and tell them, “We work here!” to get past the crowd. It was like that for a number of years.
Then Black Friday started getting pushed closer and closer to Thanksgiving. Then, it started on Thanksgiving night. Although we had nearly everyone scheduled for Black Friday, most of us simply stood around doing nothing.
The customers had come in the previous day. No one shopped on Black Friday proper.
When I was a seasonal at Target, I was lucky enough to have Thanksgiving off, but had to work Black Friday. It was fairly busy, but nothing like Walmart.
Then I went to Costco. I never had to work another Thanksgiving day again. Black Friday was pretty much the entire month of November. With the pandemic, Black Friday seems even less relevant.
Things are changing. I’m starting to notice that Walmart seems to be shifting downward while Costco is gearing up. I seemingly worked at Walmart during its prime and now I’m working at Costco when it seems to be catching fire. I’m in a stable position now, but I wonder for how long exactly.
Walmart was the unstoppable juggernaut not twenty years ago. Now it might actually be faltering. I never thought I would see it.