Attention Shoppers

Malls Make Desperate Ploys

Thanks to last year's especially horrible shopping season—the worst in more than four decades—malls are going on spending sprees designed to lure customers. In addition to sprucing up old decorations, many malls are throwing events such as tree lightings. One California shopping center even held a free aerial performance with acrobats. The idea is that about two-thirds of people who show up to a specific event will end up shopping in a store, eating at the mall, or both, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers. Other customer-friendly promotional offers include gift card, shopping spree, and laptop giveaways, free champagne flutes with minimum purchase, and complimentary gift wrapping.