But where did the term “Black Friday” come from? And is the myth of Black Friday sale even real?
Well, dear fellow consumer, we are here to answer your questions, and discuss whether we should fall for such a day or dodge it.
At first, Black Friday used to have a negative connotation referring to what happened in the 1950s in the United States, when Philadelphia traffic cops used the term to describe the shopping chaos at downtown stores. This particular Friday after Thanksgiving symbolizes the beginning of the United States Christmas shopping, which is why people rush to retail stores right after their Thanksgiving meal.
Later, the 1980s brought the mythology of Black Friday as we know it, today. With all that shopping activity, retailers began to offer deep discounts only available on that day, to encourage more people to shop from their stores, which resulted in huge profits. It is actually pretty interesting that Accounting and Business use “black” to refer to a company’s profitability (and “red” used to record its losses), which is why it has been given the name “Black Friday”.
i.e. This version of the origin is the officially sanctioned—but possibly inaccurate—story behind the tradition.
Then what’s the deal with WHITE Friday??
As for the Middle East, UAE’s Black Friday originally started as “White Friday” campaign in 2014, thinking “black” is an offensive term to describe this particular day of the week. However, as time went by, many brands took the advantage to give that day a colour that fits their brand or their target consumers; e.g. Pink Friday, Yellow Friday…etc.
When Hell Breaks Loose
Every year, buyers wait eagerly for Black Friday to make sure they snag the best deal on those must-have shoes or the latest tech. Some shoppers even wake up by dawn to catch that expensive item they have been waiting for its price to drop.
With all the advertising, more and more people are compelled to make use of the day’s hot deals. However, any time a place gets overcrowded, safety of people is compromised.
For example, last year, a report has been published saying that since 2010, Black Friday violence has resulted in 12 deaths and 117 injuries in the United States alone. It also states that the majority of Black Friday incidents (about 69% of them) happen inside retail stores, where tension runs high as shoppers fight over limited items on sale.
One way the stores have tried to help control the chaos is by turning the one-day’s deals into a whole week or even throughout the whole month of November.
Hopefully, though, due to the present pandemic, the restrictions issued by the government will lessen all Black Friday hassle, hazards, and horrors.
So, if a conflict does arrive where you stand, be ready to give up your treasures to your greedy opponent; it is always better to lose a brand-new phone to a stranger than to get a punch in the face… or worse!
Is it worth all the hype?
As a matter of fact, consumers, like you and I, fall for hot deals of quality products. But are Black Friday deals all that great? Are the prices only good on Black Friday? And are those cut-down prices even REAL?
Long story short, no. It is not worth it.
People have long known Black Friday as retail’s holy grail; the only time of the year to scoop up unbeatable deals on the season’s most popular video games, electronics, home goods, outfits and more. Marketing has even used the idea of “self-care” for its own financial benefit; if you stop and think about it, discounts or no discounts, self-care can actually be done with 0.00$.
But these low prices have always come at a “price” of their own (pun intended!). No matter how many Black Friday tips you follow, huge crowds of shoppers, early morning hours, and lines (ugh, The Lines!!) have only grown more intense over the past years.
However, we should have learned by now that a big portion those so-called “great” deals are either:
Recycled from last year (No sh*t, Sherlock!).
Can be found cheaper online.
Many retail stores change the original price tag to A HIGHER ONE, so when they add a discount they will not be actually cutting any prices (Shame on you, retailers. We trusted you!)
Q: So why does the myth of Black Friday savings still exist?
A: The Hype.
And for retailers, the necessity (obviously).
For Your Wallet’s Sake, Be Rational..FOR ONCE!
When you think of Black Friday, you probably think of big, cheap TVs. Maybe a discounted video game system. Even discounted jewelry. And sure, these big-ticket items will get you in the door of big name stores. But PUHLEASE take care, because impulsive “add-on” purchases are where your budget can start to feel the hurt. (Yes, like realizing it, every year, when it’s too late..)
Fool Me Twice, Shame On Me
All in all, think wisely this year, do yourself a favor and avoid the crowds on Black Friday. Home is safer, more comfortable, and more affordable.
Think about it this way: New Black Friday, New You; it is better to wait for other seasonal discounts, because in all honesty, that day is not all what you think it is.