Retailers hope for last-minute profits from procrastinators - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Retailers hope for last-minute profits from procrastinators, bargain hunters

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Fredia Casey Fredia Casey

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The search for the perfect Christmas present is not over yet. Last-minute shoppers were out in force on Christmas Eve.  

The parking lot here at the Mall in St. Matthew's was already full by mid-morning Monday. With time running out, Santa was still on duty there this morning, taking last minute requests from youngsters.

For grown ups, there's still a lot of gift buying, but retailers say sales have slacked off somewhat after a strong Black Friday. In spite of great deals on the day after Thanksgiving, many shoppers wait until the day before Christmas to shop hoping for stores to offer deep discounts.

Fredia Casey told us she shops late on purpose. "I only shop the last week of Christmas," she said because that's when stores have "the best sales. I have gotten some fantastic buys."

Mall Manager David Jacoby Christmas Eve usually isn't too busy, but "this year traffic has been a little different for us, so we may get busy later."

He adds, "It seems like the ones that didn't offer the deeper discounts didn't get the higher traffic."

This past Saturday was expected to be the second biggest shopping day of the season, behind Black Friday.

Shopper Barry Currthers says, "We're done.  So we just kinda out chillin', like I said, seeing Santa.  It's been about normal, like we always do.  It's been a bit over the top, so that's OK."

More people are doing their shopping online.  Those sales are expected to be at record highs.  "The last couple of years, we've done it a lot," says shopper Jeff Shaw. "This is the most we've ever done online." 

And Jacoby adds, "We've also seen a lot of pop-up stores where people actually order online and then they'll go to a store and go pick it up."

This is an important time for retail stores, as many of them take in as much as 40 percent of their sales in November and December.

The Mall closes at 6 p.m. today, as do most other stores in Kentuckiana. Meijer is staying open until 7 p.m. for those who wait until the absolute last minute.

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