Every year around the Fall and Winter holidays, our minds turn onto shopping mode. With so many events coming up and so much love to give, we must make sure that we budget ourselves and do our home and gift shopping in advance to prepare for a smooth holiday season! While many people choose to start their shopping as early as September or October, and some choose to wait until the days leading up to the big holidays, the most average time of year to begin our holiday shopping is the end of November and beginning of December. This shopping season, full of sales and shopping treats, is (un)officially marked by a commercial dream come true called Black Friday.
What is Black Friday Anyways?!
Black Friday is, for all intents and purposes, the Friday after Thanksgiving Thursday. Over the past decades, this day is filled with door-buster sales and early bird specials in almost every store out there competing to attract customers and loyal consumers. Bargain hunters are especially jolly during Black Friday for a very good reason – since this day is known as a day for bargain sales, Black Friday is almost always the biggest sale day of the entire year, with unbeatable markdowns that people simply will not find again during any other sale day. Why is it called BLACK Friday? For that reason exactly! Retailers report such high profits that their businesses gain and gain. With gains traditionally marked in black and losses in red, this profitable day therefore lets businesses enjoy seeing a whole lot of black on their records! Exciting!
Leading up to Black Friday…
You would think that Black Friday sales would only start being discussed and highlighted on the days or weeks leading up to Black Friday itself, but don’t be surprised if you see advertisements creeping earlier and earlier! Black Friday is a great day for businesses AND consumers, but keep in mind the gruesome pressure businesses feel to compete with one another for customers! In order to ensure that their brand will have a successful Black Friday, businesses work very hard on creating successful advertising campaigns. While sales advertisements are traditionally announced on Thanksgiving Day, these campaigns can begin as early as October, and although that sounds almost too early, it reaps great results. Since so many shoppers like to plan their shopping early so that they can budget well and make their purchases slowly, advertising Black Friday early allows these shoppers to keep Black Friday sales for specific stores in mind when planning their holiday gifts.
Black Friday on a Wednesday?
With advertising creeping earlier and earlier and the competition getting more and more intense, it was only a matter of time before the shopping times themselves were leveraged to boost sales! That’s right – Black Friday is no longer limited to FRIDAY! In fact, the year 2013 began a trend where stores opened their doors for Black Friday customers on Thanksgiving Day or even on the Wednesday prior. While this is somewhat controversial due to the employees that must work during these days, the earlier opening time both gives customers more time to shop and businesses more time to SELL, thereby boosting their sales and overall profits.
If Black Friday Advertising Starts on a Wednesday, When Does It End?!
We know, we know. It’s a little confusing that Black FRIDAY actually begins as early as WEDNESDAY… but that might help lessen the shock when we hear that it lasts way longer than Friday sometimes too! In order to give customers all the time they need and sell, sell, sell, some stores will open their Black Friday deals late into the weekend. While this is true, don’t wait to long to go out to make your purchases! Inventories run out quickly this time of year!
From In-Stores to Online…
Traditionally, Black Friday was for in-store shopping. When cyber-shopping rose in popularity, businesses created a Cyber Monday in order to lessen competition between the two modes of shopping. The more time goes by, however, the more these lines blend together. While Cyber Monday will have the best of the online deals, keep in mind that many stores now open their cyber sales alongside their in-store sales!
Tips for Black Friday Shopping!
For the best Black Friday shopping experience, consider these tips:
- Plan ahead! Decide what you want in advance and try to plan your purchases according to timing out the best deals.
- If you’re deciding between big ticket items and smaller items, stick with the big ticket items! Black Friday deals give a bigger advantage to big purchases. It’s better to save big with 20% off a $200 item ($40!) than save small with 50% off a $20 item ($10).
- Check deals for the same items from different stores. If you prefer one store over another, see if they have price matching policies!
- Buy only what you know you need or want! Returns from Black Friday sales are often problematic due to the big sale nature of the deals.
HAPPY BLACK FRIDAY!