Alisa Boswell: Freedom New Mexico Customers line up for the register at Bealls in Portales Friday morning during Black Friday sales. Manager Melissa Bonem said within two hours after opening, the store had already made 25 percent of its goal.
“Booming” was not the word most local Clovis and Portales retail officials used for store traffic Friday morning during Black Friday sales.
Despite the lack of long lines and sales moving at a steady pace, retail officials said they expect to come out ahead or break even with last year’s Black Friday sales.
North Plains Mall in Clovis opened at 6 a.m. to a shopping crowd comparable in size to that of an average shopping day.
Sears Manager Ralph Bell said it is normal for electronic sales to be heavy the first half of the day. Soft line (clothes and shoes) sales pick up later in the day.
“Most of the time, soft lines sell more later in the day because there’s not a rush to get those,” Bell said. “Sales compared to last year, it’s going to be hard to say, because I couldn’t tell you how soft lines are going to turn out.”
Maurices Managers Crystal Duran and Andrea Sanchez said sales for their store were much better than last year, despite the steady flow of mall customers.
“It could be because we handed this sale flier out a couple of weeks in advance, Sanchez said, shrugging her shoulders as to further explanation of their increased sales.
The store had sweaters and puffer vests for under $20 along with handing out Secret Santa coupons, which could contain anywhere from 20 to 50 percent off a single item or an overall purchase.
Rockford Burris, inventory specialist for Creighton’s in Portales, said their business was also having a large improvement in sales from last year.
“People were lined up before we even opened,” he said. “It’s been pretty steady ever since.”
Creighton’s had 50 percent off sales on items, such as hats and clothes and a buy one, get one free sale on men’s and women’s shirts.
“In the past, Black Friday sales haven’t been as good,” Burris said. “They’ve been much more brisk today.”