"I'm, like, less than halfway [finished], I have so much more to go,'' shopper Rosa Garcia told ABC News at the Manhattan Mall. "I always do this. ... I heard that two weeks before Christmas is when all the sales start, so I waited, but most of the things are gone."
Garcia is not alone. Experts say retailers -- expecting another difficult year -- ordered less inventory this year to try and protect their profit margins. As a result, a lot of shoppers are finding popular items sold out.
While shoppers were able to hit the store in the New York area before the brunt of the storm hit, further down the coast, the blizzard snarled shoppers who couldn't even reach the malls on snow-socked roads. Many hopeful shoppers hit the stores early in the morning.
"I got out early because I'm going now to beat the snow,'' Gloria Curry told ABC News.
The heavy snow could mean lower prices this week.
While experts say retailers weren't forced to resort to the desperate markdowns of last year, some may be ready to press the panic button after this wintry weekend.
"If the traffic doesn't materialize at the malls because they can't get there, retailers might have to get a little more promotional than they were hoping to going into this weekend," said Lori Wachs, vice president of Delaware Investments.