(WWLP) – It was a shopping weekend for consumers as they rushed online or in-store to receive tax-free purchases.
Local stores, however, saw a higher number of shoppers in their stores rather than online, due to extra discounts on top of tax-free shopping only made available in-person.
For instance, Ludlow and Westfield’s PlayNow Toy and Game is offering an extra 10% on top of the tax-free. Playnow has the options of pick up in store and buy-online, purchase directly from store, or ship to house.
PlayNow store owner, Raymond Vigneault saw a higher in-person purchase rate than online purchase rates from consumers.
“I don’t think online sales increase as much as in-person sales do,” said Vigneault. “People like to walk around, enjoy the experience of the store, and browse.”
Store Manager of Michael Szwed Jewelers, Jennifer Blais agrees.
“Online sales make up only a small fraction of our total sales,” said Blais. “I think our customers enjoy the in-store shopping experience we provide so they tend to shop less on our website and more in person.”
“We list all of our current in store inventory on our website so that we can efficiently assist those who prefer to shop online,” added Blais. “We don’t anticipate a big spike in our online sales this weekend but we do hope this offers some convenience for people looking to enjoy some tax-free shopping. “
Consumers also plan for the special tax-free weekend ahead, which may be a reason why they prefer to shop in-person. Expensive items are also made cheaper.
For instance, consumers are saving a tax rate of 6.25% on their purchases over the weekend. Which means the savings for a $1000 item at Longmeadow’s Michael Szwed Jewelers would be $62.50.
Michael Szwed Jewelers provides a code (TAXFREE) listed on their website that takes a discount equivalent to the tax amount off of any online sales up to $2,500.
Michael Szeged Jewelers offers multiple shipping options as well as in store and curbside pick up. The store has not seen much of a pattern in their online sales to date. “Some people will grab quick gift items like our stackable T. Jazelle or Dee Berkley beaded bracelets and others will purchase diamond jewelry,” said Blais.
Rather than a sales tax-free weekend, local stores can expect a larger presence online on Cyber Monday.