Black Friday was anything but “black” in terms of sales for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) U.S. The footfalls increased as compared to last year and their newly introduced scheme of one-hour guarantee on key electronic items, met with an amazing response. Bill Simon, Walmart U.S. president and chief executive officer stated that over 1.3 million associates had pitched to make sure that Black Friday is pulled off successfully and the results clearly reflect that. Simon says that around 22 million customers were attended to on Thursday.
There were 3 events in their Black Friday plan this year scheduled at 8 p.m., 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. Walmart processed around 10 million register transactions and almost 5,000 items per second during the peak traffic period from 8 p.m. through midnight.
Popular items around 8 p.m. were gaming consoles, video games, DVDs, Furbys, fashion dolls, board games and Crock-Pots. A while later at 10 p.m. the electronics took over with big-screen TVs, tablets, laptops and digital cameras. Walmart's "guaranteed" items did very well and the iPad 2, Emerson 32" LCD TV and LG Blu-ray player saw a great turnout. According to the statistics since the 8 p.m. event, Walmart sold more than:
- 1.3 million televisions
- 1.3 million dolls
- 1.8 million towels
- 250,000 bicycles
When asked about the UFCW's planned protests, Simon clarified that out of the 26 protests, most of them didn’t include Walmart associates. The walk-offs guaranteed by UFCW did not happen as the number of associates who missed their scheduled shift stayed the same as compared to last year.
Associates of Walmart get a 10% discount on general merchandise purchased at stores all through the year. Earlier during the holiday season, the company presented associates with a special holiday discount of 10 percent off most food items from November 9 to January 1 to help make the holidays for its associates and their families even more special. An extra 10% discount will be provided to associates on a basket of goods, who had helped in assisting customers. In fact, associates who pitched in to implement Walmart's Black Friday events will also get holiday pay.