Atlanta- Deep inside Wal-Mart — Ten seconds. That’s all the time Luis A. Martins would get. Or less.
So at 4:15 a.m. he pressed himself close to the small tower of desktop computers, carving out a good spot among more than 100 other bleary-eyed and increasingly pushy people awaiting the 5 a.m. debut of one-time deals for Black Friday at this Wal-Mart in Roswell.
he stack of computers was wrapped in black plastic, a covering that proved almost too tempting for Martins. At 4:30 a.m. he carefully hooked a finger into the casing and pulled down just a small piece, revealing one of the $398 HP Pavilion desktop computers that would be up for grabs in just 30 minutes.
This was Martins’ first time shopping on Black Friday, an event traditionally known for moving retailers out of the red and into the black for the year. The day lures a cross-section of consumers out of turkey-induced stupors before dawn for sales that save them as much as 50 percent.
It’s the industry’s biggest shopping day — studies show shoppers spent $11 billion on Black Friday last year — and provides a vague sense of how strong holiday sales will be and what strategy is right for the rest of the season.
The official tallies and analyses won’t come out until next week. But at this point, retail gurus are feeling good about Black Friday, and the rest of the season: Holiday spending is projected to rise 4.2 percent over 2015, according to retail research firm ShopperTrak.