The Buzz on Black Friday

BreakingModern – For most people, Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving) is an opportunity to start and finish Christmas shopping one month early. But for others, it’s just another day to sit back and watch everyone else lose their minds and go crazy.

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The Rise of Black Friday

Even though Black Friday started out as an all-day single-day event, retail stores have recently gotten a headstart on sales a day early. In the past two years, shopping activity on Thanksgiving Day rose from 3.6 percent to 11.6 percent. There was a time, a few years ago, when Black Friday was limited to just Friday. But over time things changed. Retailers gradually opened a window to extend their sales for the entire weekend. And that’s when Black Friday morphed into a four-day superholiday of shopping, starting the afternoon of Thanksgiving.

In addition, many retailers have slowly transitioned in-store deals to the Internet. According to a recent article in USA Today, most of the best deals this year will be online rather than in stores. This makes it possible to get great bargains at stores like Target and Walmart and avoid the crowds.

Be alert for price changes during this shop-till-you-drop weekend. Last year, Walmart, Best Buy, Kmart, RadioShack and Target — just to name a few — reportedly adjusted prices on 55 percent of their items. And this year many more retailers are planning to do the same thing. It’s going to be tough competition out there.

Forbes predicted young adults will be the ones taking advantage of Black Friday sales. With most of the forefront deals being associated with tech, young shoppers will know what apps can help them find the best deals from retailers and use that to their advantage. It’s the perfect way to hunt from store to store grabbing all the best deals before everything is sold out. This year, retailers have amped up the promotion for Black Friday sales by sending out email alerts, creating apps and engaging customers through social media.

Doorbuster Deals and Hot Items

A few years ago, when a lot of stores promoted “doorbuster” deals to get bodies through the doors, it backfired when advertised items weren’t available in appropriate quantities. Angry customers were not what the stores wanted. This year, retailers have stocked up on doorbuster items to avoid angry crowds. Even though they’ve ordered more quantities of TVs and iPads, it’s probably a good idea to assume that stores will inevitably run out of hot ticket items.

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Last year, tablets were a top-selling item. And this year the mobile devices are sure to be popular gift items again. In 2013, tablets were as low as $30, and with the help of gift cards they will probably be just as low this year. Black Friday is a great opportunity to upgrade your tablet.

Dealnews also noted that while TVs tend to be one of the biggest deals on Black Friday, the prices haven’t moved compared to 2013, as far as the bigger and well-known brands go. From 2008 prices of 42” TVs were $680 and reduced to $200 in 2011. Following that, TVs have barely shown increasing discounts. In 2012, 42” TVs were reported sold at an average of $180 and $178 last year. They don’t expect brand name TVs to show a drastic increase in sales.

There’s a lot of buzz about this weekend and many predictions. One thing’s for sure: Black Friday is going to make headlines all weekend long with a ton of deals everywhere.

For BMod, I’m Alicia Chinatomby.

All images: Diariocritico de Venezuela via Flickr Creative Commons

Alicia Chinatomby

Author: Alicia Chinatomby

Based in New York City, Alicia Chinatomby covers trends and personalities for BreakingModern. Follow her at @AliciaC_7 on Twitter.

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