After the turkey, a nap, football and more turkey comes the shopping. Black Friday shopping has now moved into Thanksgiving Day Thursday for many retailers.
We all know that there is a lot of hype, marketing, commercials and pandemonium around Black Friday, but do we really know the details of it?
This article will show you what Black Friday is, where it came from, what you can expect during the day and how to stay safe while finding the best deals out there.
What is Black Friday?
Black Friday is the day that kicks off the holiday sale season for retailers. In retail shopping, it is typically the first day after Thanksgiving, but in recent years it has been extended to the night of Thanksgiving itself.
From early bird specials to door buster sales, retailers use many different types of Black Friday deals to attract more business for the upcoming season.
Most of the Black Friday deals offered by retailers include heavily discounted products for a limited number of items. This marketing tactic has created the well-known hours-long lines and pandemonium seen every year as stores open their doors for business.
Black Friday 2015 statistics show that over 74 million people shopped on Black Friday. The Black Friday 2015 statistics are actually the lowest since 2011, but it showed that nearly 35 million people shopped on Thursday rather than Friday.
When is Black Friday in 2016
Black Friday 2016 will fall on November 25, 2016. If trends are correct, shoppers won’t have to wait until Friday to begin taking advantage of Black Friday 2016 deals.
The Black Friday season has been starting earlier and earlier in recent years. Some retailers have even begun opening their doors for Black Friday sales to begin as early as 5:00pm.
Many retailers have started to gravitate towards opening their virtual Black Friday doors online as well. The online trend is expected to continue for Black Friday 2016
Black Friday is regarded as the day where retailers can begin to turn a profit during the busiest shopping season of the year. The holiday shopping season is a critical time for many retailers and it accounts for roughly 30% of its annual revenue.
The current mainstream story of where the Black Friday name comes from is kind of boring. It is said that the name originates from business owners being able to take their stores out of being in the “red’ to being in the “black”, or profitable, starting from that day.
It’s accounting ledger-speak. However, there is a different historical interpretation to that story.
Some historians believe that the name came out of Philadelphia in the mid-1960’s when busses and cars would clog up the streets after Thanksgiving with holiday shoppers. It is said that police officers and bus drivers would call that day “Black Friday” because of the intense traffic.
Since business owners thought that the title had negative connotations to it, they began to circulate the ledger story.
Black Friday Sales Online
To avoid the rush, many people choose to conduct their holiday shopping on the internet. Because of that, many retailers have included Black Friday sales in addition to the online Cyber Monday deals.
Below is Black Friday information for 4 major US retailers:
Amazon Black Friday
As strictly an online retailer, Amazon leads the way with online holiday sales.
Amazon Black Friday deals will begin counting down starting November 1st, 2016. Their Black Friday 2016 ads will start with “lightening deals” from November 1st through November 26th.
By comparing last year to this year, Amazon will be outdoing their Black Friday 2015 ads. They are projected to offer over 30,000 deals for its Amazon Prime members between Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Walmart Black Friday
Walmart has a strong online presence in retail, but they are also one of the strongest brick-and-mortar retailers in the US. The Walmart Black Friday sale is famous, or infamous, for having really low prices on technology products like flat screen televisions, laptops and kitchen appliances.
The Walmart Black Friday 2015 ads featured items like iPads for less than $200 and 50-inch LED televisions for less than $220. Walmart is known for offering these types of while supplies last deals for Black Friday.
So don’t be surprised to find hundreds of people lined up at Walmart’s throughout the US after seeing their Black Friday 2016 ads.
Target Black Friday
Like Walmart, Target enjoys a great physical and online presence. Target Black Friday sales usually feature items like appliances, furniture, clothes, and technology.
Because of competition with other major retailers, Target is expected to go all out for their Black Friday 2016 ads.
Best Buy Black Friday
Best Buy is primarily a technology retailer. Because of the high quality and price of their technology products, people get very excited when Best Buy Black Friday deals are on the horizon.
Best Buy is also known for having long lines outside of their doors before the Black Friday event. In 2015 Best Buy opened their doors at 5:00pm on Thanksgiving until 1:00am and then re-opened at 8:00am.
Best Buy offered more than 300 various deals in their Black Friday 2015 ads allowing people to save up to $2,000. It is estimated that 2016 will be no different.
Are Banks Closed on Thanksgiving?
Banks are usually closed on Thanksgiving. However, banks are typically open the day before and the day after Thanksgiving. That is great news for holiday shoppers who need to address banking needs for the Black Friday weekend.
Tips for Black Friday Shopping
When shopping during Black Friday it is easy to get swept up in all of the hype and savings. Seeing the mad rush of purchases only makes it easier to get involved and start spending money.
Here are some tips for shopping on Black Friday:
Set an overall holiday budget
Start shopping early
Download store apps that show current prices per retailer all in one place
Check store policies for price matching. You may get something at one store that can be less expensive at another store
Pay with credit. Although sticking to your budget by using cash is best, this is merely for safety reasons
Get gift receipts in case a wrong gift choice was made
Bring ads with you in case there are any discrepancies at the check-out counter
While Black Friday is a good time to get gifts at cheaper prices, it is also the busiest day. That means taking proper safety precautions is necessary.
Is it Dangerous to Shop During Early Morning Hours of Black Friday?
Shopping on Black Friday can be dangerous. Simply go to YouTube and find some of the Black Friday videos to see for yourself.
However, it does not have to be dangerous at all. By avoiding the rush, staying away from mobs of people fighting over products and knowing exactly what is needed on your list, you can easily shop in safety.
Here are a few things to consider to stay safe while Black Friday Shopping:
Don’t buy more than you can carry
Don’t carry wads of cash
Carry purses near the body and wallets in the front pockets
Have keys in hand before getting to your car
Don’t leave bags visible in your car when shopping from store to store
Keep your eyes on your shopping cart
Shop Online Safely
Shopping online will eliminate almost all of the physical harm that can be faced when shopping amongst thousands of other people. However, there are still some precautions that should be made when Black Friday shopping online.
Update security software on personal computers and establish a firewall
Only use secure websites with an “https” in the URL address when making a purchase
Shop with companies you are familiar with
Only use a secure Wi-Fi connection
Don’t offer personal information when emailed solicitations
Black Friday has become a sort of family tradition to many people. It is also a great time to get some holiday shopping done and save money in the process.
Following the tips in this article will let you shop safely and smartly for this Black Friday shopping year.