Black Friday: How Retailers Are Using Mobile to Attract Customers This Season

By the Editors

If you’ve ever gone shopping on Black Friday, you know how crowded the stores can be. Droves of people awake hours before dawn to stand outside stores in the cold just waiting for those doors to swing open. As soon as they gain access to their favorite stores, the race is on. Customers flock to the racks and load up their carts with heavily discounted items. Then they head home, feeling exhausted and accomplished after their shopping trip.

Over the past few years, there has been an interesting trend in the retail space related to Black Friday. More and more stores have shifted their opening hours to Thanksgiving evening to help alleviate some of the heavy traffic during the early morning rush. In order to drive more customers to their brick and mortar locations on Thanksgiving night and Black Friday morning, many retailers are turning to mobile. Here’s how three retailers are using mobile to pique the interest of early bird holiday shoppers, and here’s what you can learn from their example.

Kohl’s SMS deals campaign

As part of their Black Friday shopping extravaganza, Kohl’s is offering shoppers a special deal that can be accessed from mobile devices. Customers who are mapping out their post-Thanksgiving shopping adventure on their smartphones can text “SAVE07” to KOHLS to gain access to special deal notifications, as well as a 15% off coupon which can be redeemed at It’s a perfect deal for those interested in avoiding the Black Friday crowds by shopping online that morning or partaking in Cyber Monday.

Target combines mobile and social

This year, Target is stepping up their mobile and social media efforts to attract customers’ attention this holiday season. The popular retailer is investing considerable time into Pinterest in particular to make connections with a very specific target audience – busy mothers who are using their mobile devices for gift inspiration or holiday shopping. Target is creating a number of themed Pinterest boards to get customers in the mood to shop. The brand is also encouraging shoppers to share their favorite holiday moments using the hashtag #MyKindOfHoliday on social media.

JCPenney uses text notifications and email

JCPenney is also stepping up their mobile efforts this holiday season. The brand is providing mobile customers with access to special Black Friday and seasonal shopping deals through text notifications. Customers who are interested in receiving holiday coupons and alerts can sign up on JCPenney’s dedicated Black Friday page. Those who opt-in will also receive deal alerts via email as well.

This year, mobile is giving Black Friday shoppers an edge on the competition. Many stores are offering extra incentives, such as percentage off discounts, for those who sign up for text alerts or opt-in to receive email notifications. If you plan to head out shopping on Black Friday, be sure to plan your strategy and explore mobile options for access to the best deals.

If you’re interested in using mobile to connect with your customers for the Black Friday rush, there’s still time!