Walmart to throw cookies-and-coffee party before sale begins Thanksgiving

Retailer offers some Black Friday deals even before the official sale begins on November 22

Black Friday 2018 Store Hours

Walmart isn’t waiting until Black Friday to roll out its deals.

The retail giant begins introducing online deals Nov. 8, with all deals appearing on at 10 p.m. ET on Nov. 21 — the day before Thanksgiving. You can preview the sale now.

» All the Black Friday deals to catch in 2018

"If customers can't wait until Thanksgiving, we have deals starting tonight," Walmart U.S.' chief merchandising officer, Steve Bratspies, said during a call with Business Insider reporters.

For those shoppers who prefer the frantic shopping experience, Walmart will open 6 p.m. local time on Thanksgiving Day.

Bratspies told Business Insider the company will introduce new measures to make shopping in the stores easier. The Walmart app, for instance, will have color-coded Black Friday store maps, with pins to show shoppers where the “the top eight Black Friday deals” are in each store. The map will highlight home, apparel, electronics and toy departments, so you’ll know where to go within each store.

» Black Friday 2018: Target rolls out Black Friday ad

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Maybe its most innovative new feature will be the Check Out With Me service. In the busiest departments, Walmart employees wearing yellow sashes will be able to check out shoppers right there on sales floor. Employees will have scanners and a Bluetooth printer that will give customers a paper receipt, thus allowing shoppers to avoid the long checkout lines.

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Also new this year is a presale party. From 4 to 6 p.m. local time on Thanksgiving, each store will throw a Light Up Black Friday party. The company predicts it will hand out 4 million cups of coffee and 2 million cookies from the stores’ bakeries.

» Macy's releases 2018 Black Friday deals

Business Insider said Bratspies added that  Walmart still views Black Friday as an important event, despite the perceived decline of the sales-oriented day.

"We expect it to be a good event, like it has been in past years," Bratspies said. "The season has been stretched out a bit, but we don't think that will take any of the wind out of our sails. We just want customers to choose Walmart and we're agnostic about what channel they use."

Here are a few deals you can get in advance of Black Friday, available starting today.

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