‘TIS the season to start shopping for your loved ones.
The annual struggle to brace the crowds or shop in the comfort of your home looms.
Online shopping was back in the spotlight this week with the Australian launch of Click Frenzy – even though ultimately a lucky few negotiated the site’s crashes to claim a bargain.
Is it just easier to trek out and shop locally in Ballarat to buy exactly what you need?
Commerce Ballarat chairwoman Barb O’Dwyer said sales were starting to heat up for the region’s retailers which was a healthy sign.
“I’m sure a lot of Ballarat businesses are bending over backwards to help consumers,” Ms O’Dwyer said. “A whole lot have their catalogues out and I know a lot of businesses have some great specials advertised.”
Pre-Christmas sales are cleverly being packaged into shopping events like twilight discount nights to accommodate savvy after-work shoppers, often after tea-time.
More than one million Australian shoppers signed up for Tuesday night’s Click Frenzy, a 24-hour shopping event designed for shoppers to snag one-off deals on from well-known retailers and the site crashed under the hype for its first few hours.
The Courier had some readers that managed to snare some Christmas presents via the novelty.
“I got some bargain celebrity fragrances for stocking fillers. No cost for postage and no need to shop during the silly season. I’m happy,” Diane Lawson posted on The Courier’s Facebook page.
Reader Candice Young decided to wait for Boxing Day sales for appliances but “managed to grab” stocking fillers from Pumpkin Patch, Surfstich and Target, via the Frenzy, saving more than half-price on some items.
“The concept is fantastic and quite possibly overdue as the US has had these sales for quite a while,” Ms Young said.
Young Ballarat shopper Casey Bransgrove said her friends were open to online shopping but more likely to shop local for Christmas.
Meanwhile, Myer Ballarat will have an extra special Christmas flair for its shoppers with a touch of Melbourne magic for the first time.
Workers have been busy creating a retrospective display of the Myer Christmas windows, featuring characters from past windows including Olivia, Beatrix Potter, Wind in the Willows, The Grinch, The Polar Express and The Nutcracker.
Myer creative concepts co-ordinator (windows) Matt Talbot said it brought some of the metropolitan festivities to regional shoppers.
“We hope it will bring a lot of customers into see the windows,” Mr Talbot said.