Black Friday is a savvy-shoppers heaven. Throughout the year we search and research deals, bargains and offers to spend the least to get the most. But on Black Friday, those offers just fall into our laps with one temptation after another. It’s dangerous as you could blog your budget on some fantastic looking deals. But we must remain strong and continue to keep our heads clear to figure out what’s really a good deal or not…
What is Black Friday?
Black Friday is a retail savings event held on the Friday after the Thursday of Thanksgiving (a US holiday). Retails will give special and higher discounts than usual as the day is usually considered the first day of the Christmas shopping period. If you’re like me, and you might be as you’re reading this, you’ve probably already researched, planned, budgeted and purchased all your Christmas presents.
However you might be holding out for that one special item you’re planning on finding on a Black Friday deal. It’s wise to wait to see what retailers offer but it’s important not to get caught up in the madness of it.
So why do retailers offer such big discounts on Black Friday? You’d think that it seems silly to offer such high discounts however they continue to do so for 3 reasons:
The companies know you’ll spend more than you intended to when presented with discounts and sales on the day.
Their competitors continue to offer Black Friday deals so they must also.
They still make profit on those items. Makes you wonder how big their profit margins are to slice a £999 TV down to £200…
To avoid falling into the Black Friday traps, here’s my researched advice. Remember that not all deals are good deals and that preparation and organisation are essential to winning at Black Friday.
Plan ahead. Work out who you’re buying for, what they would like, how much per person you’re willing to spend and stick to it. That last part is the most important as it’s easy to get carried away with the bargain.
It’s only a bargain if you were intending to buy it anyway. That £200 games console is only a bargain if you were planning on spending £300 on one before Black Friday.
Scope out their prices beforehand. Sign up to newsletters in advance of Black Friday and see if they’re actually offering that much of a discount.
Compare the products on different platforms. Buying something with 50% off isn’t as good as finding it from a different site for 55% off.
Keep it loyal. If you have a good loyalty program with one company, it might be better in terms of rewards to pay a little more. Compare perks and savings before you jump in.
Buy research good quality items. That non-branded microwave for only £9 is likely awful and you’ll end up paying more to replace in the future. Read the product reviews and don’t accept a lesser quality product.
Avoid the madness and shop online. I’m a budget conscious person (I started a blog on it!) but I would rather pay £5 more on my shop to avoid the anxiety inducing chaos that the shops bring.
Queue up early. If you must go to the shops then make a day of it and queue up with a friend, a thermos and a magazine to be in first. The first 30 minutes are the most crucial for finding the deals.
Check your returns and warranty policy. You don’t want to buy something that can only be returned for credit note or can’t be fixed in the future.
Prep your Payment. Sign up to websites you’re planning to shop at on Black Friday and pre-add your payment details. That way when the sales hit, you can check out speedily.