SUNRISE (CBSMiami) – Another Black Friday is in the books.
Sawgrass Mills Mall was so mobbed with people that shoppers parked their cars along the grass on the main road around the mall.
People came from miles around and from many different countries just to look for deals at the massive outlet mall.
The sidewalks and walkways at Sawgrass were flooded with bargain hunters from morning until night on Black Friday. For some it was a marathon day.
“We came in the morning, went home and came back tonight,” said Carla Peron.
For everyone it was a chance to hunt for deals and discounts.
“I heard Coach has 70 percent off so I’m interested in seeing that,” said Sigilenda Miles.
“They have really good deals,” said Jhoam Garcia. “We bought a lot of Gucci stuff, Michael Kors. They have really good deals.”
Many retailers count on the holiday shopping season to get them from the red to the black on their bottom lines and at Sawgrass Mills and other hot shopping spots in Broward and Miiami-Dade, like Dolphin Mall, a good portion of the shoppers visit from outside the U.S., hoping to save money on high end products. That’s what Lisandro Bojorquez, from El Salvador, is doing.
“I think people have a little confidence in the economy, more economic recovery and therefore they’re spending a little more,” he said.
And that confidence was reflected in the crush of people in line and those searching for a parking spot.
Sheetal Narang says Black Friday is not just about shopping, it’s about being with family and friends.
“Today is crazy. It’s madness,” she said. “I’m here for fun actually not just for shopping. It’s an experience.”
It’s an experience all right and one that many families shared, like Donald Farrington and his wife.
“Who are you buying for tonight?” a reporter asked Farrington.
“My wife,” he replied, shooting his wife a quick glance.
Black Friday is changing, as the holiday shopping season is beginning earlier and earlier each year, with deals offered by stores earlier in November and of course online shopping is a major factor in a store’s bottom line. There are big expectations this year. The National Retail Federation is expecting consumers to spend more than $680 billion this holiday season. That’s a four percent increase over last year.
Cyber Monday is expected to be the largest online shopping day in history with $6.6 billion in sales.
Even as retailers are counting on a lift from a better economy, they’re looking beyond economic data and mapping out ways to pick up sales from other retailers as Amazon expands its reach.