Black Friday may feel like an annual treat for thrifty shoppers, but it has little to do with altruism. For retailers, it is all about maximising consumer spend. Some Black Friday deals will save you money, with some items selling at or below cost price, but profit-starved stores, especially those in South Africa under extreme pressure, do not plan to come in at a loss for the day.
Be that as it may, you can make Black Friday profitable for yourself by spending way less on the items that have been on your Wishlist. In South Africa, shoppers spent close to R3 billion at stores on Black Friday 2018 - a leap in spending so high that it even helped ‘save’ the country’s economy after a torrid year. With South African consumer spending habits often dictated by payday deposits, it’s an expense that few local consumers can actually afford.
In order to resist the urge to spend compulsively this Black Friday, PLAN AHEAD! Make a list of all the things you have been eyeing, with their prices and only get them if, and only if, they are less than what they normally cost.
Tips for shopping on Black Friday:
- Check out the ads and the Apps for deals
- Do your research well before Friday
- Compare prices
- Look for early-bird shopper discounts
- Plan where you want to shop
- Beat the crowds with night owl discounts the night before
- Ask for Gift Receipts
It is also worth noting that because of the influx of people on the day, a lot of stores normally have pre-Black Friday specials. These specials may not necessarily be as much as the prices on the day itself, but they are still reasonable discounts. And if you are not a fan of crowds and internet traffic, you might want to take advantage of these.
Final tip: while you’re looking for those amazing deals, keep the long view in mind - in a year from now (or 5?), will you be happy that you spent your money on this glitzy blingy beautiful thingy you’re buying right now?