The Truth about Black Friday Sales
The truth about Black Friday? Black Friday has morphed into Black November, and retailers - both traditional and online, begin running their Black Friday deals on November 1st. That’s right - as soon as you finally hit the bed after a fright filled night of collecting candy from your neighbors, retailers are gearing up to relieve you of your holiday shopping budgets.
Be sure to look at our Black Friday Ad Scans and Deals Page
Questioning Black Friday
Still, many shoppers assume every Black Friday deal is awesome; but is the listed merchandise truly a hot deal? Should you wake up early and battle the throngs of consumers standing in line at your favorite store? Are these sales really limited time deals, or can better pricing be had at other times?
To answer these questions, we dug deep into last year’s Black Friday deals to see if the deals were really as good as advertised. For instance, was there a deal offered later in the year that beat Black Friday’s pricing? Is there a reason to give into the hype?
Many retailers “recycle” Black Friday ads and do not change deal pricing on some products from year to year. While this might make sense if their inventory levels are high, consumers have come to expect deeper discounts each year on a wider variety of products.
In fact, the opposite is true - a recent study found that 92% of stores had Black Friday “doorbuster” deals that existed the previous last year. The same study found retailers would often try to trick consumers on Black Friday with knockoff deals, shady rebate offers, and misleading original prices. The upshot? Use a website like BuyVia to compare prices before shopping - a little homework can really pay off in the end.
Where did the Doorbuster come from?
The doorbuster is a limited time super cheap deal designed get shoppers into the store. They are often available early in the morning and sell out almost immediately. More organized stores hand out vouchers to those in line to prevent mass hysteria from occurring from when the doors open up.
Doorbusters have been around far longer Black Friday. These "loss leaders" first appeared in an ad in August 1917 for Killian's Department store: "Wednesday's 8 o'clock doorbusters"
A bargain item was sold at a tiny fraction of its regular price. This brought in the crowds long before the store opened. Other stores in Iowa continued this tradition throughout the 1920's.
Some Black Friday Deal examples from 2015:
Macy's Up to 50% off Extra 10-25% Off Sitewide with coupon code PRES. Ends February 20, 2017. Exclusions apply, see site for details. Eligible items as marked. Shipping is free on orders over $49. Otherwise, free shipping when you buy any item from Beauty section. The cheapest item costs $4. Many items are also available for buy online, pick up in-store.
Excludes mattress and furniture.
Michael Kors Asymmetrical Zip Walker Coat only $118.99 after code (reg. $275).
Cole Haan Men's Grantland Chelsea Boots only $114.74 after code (reg. $240).
Samsonite Freeform 21" Spinner only $135.99 after code (reg. $320).
Sales tax in: Most States
Posted: February 20, 2017 9:06 AM PST
$44.99$19.99Save: $25.00 (55%)eBay Coupons
$30 at amazon. H&R Block Tax Software 2016 Deluxe + State. Only $19.99 for PC or Mac.
Free unlimited expert tax advice via online chat.
In-person audit support: Only H&R Block helps customers prepare for an audit and provides a tax professional to represent them in person, for free.
H&R Block Software has Step-by-step questions and answers easily guides customers through their return.
Posted: February 20, 2017 9:00 AM PST
$349.99$249.99Save: $100.00 (28%)eBay Coupons
Lowest price! eBay (newegg, 261,000 feedback) has the Playstation 4 Slim - PS4 Console Sale - Extra Controller Priced at $249.99 with Free shipping. Tax in CA, TN, NJ. Rated 4.9 out of 5 stars.
- New slim low profile version
- More than just high quality games - Netflix and Hulu Plus to YouTube and Vudu.
PlayStation 4 Slim Specifications
- 500GB hard drive
- 1.84 TFLOPS graphics processor
- 256MB XDR Main RAM and 256MB GDDR3 VRAM
- Dualshock 4 controller included
- HDMI connection
- USB 3.0 connection
- Dimensions: 18.88”x13.38”x4.25”
- Weight: 9.97 lb.
- One-year warranty from Sony
Posted: February 20, 2017 9:00 AM PST
$10.00$0.00Save: $10.00 (100%)
Free Entrance Days in the National Parks is available on these Holidays in 2017:
- January 16 Martin Luther King Jr. Day
- February 20 Presidents Day
- April 15-16, 22-23 National Park Week
- August 25 National Park Service Birthday
- September 30 National Public Lands Day
- November 11-12 Veterans Day
Check with your local park to see if they are participating.Posted: February 20, 2017 12:00 AM PST
Eddie Bauer Coupons
Eddie Bauer 50% off Clearance Jackets - Free Shipping with Coupon Code: TREK50 Expires Soon - With final discount shown during checkout after entering Code. Shop early for best selection. Free shipping.
Men's MicroTherm StormDown Jacket Men's MicroTherm StormDown Jacket $129.99 - Code = $65, free shipping. Code does not work items on sale at $119.40.
Men's and women's outdoor apparel and more are on sale. Includes sale and clearance items already up to 75% off. Shipping is free on orders over $99, free with Shoprunner, else from $8.
Sales tax in: Most States
Posted: February 20, 2017 12:00 AM PST
$299.99$199.99Save: $100.00 (33%)eBay Coupons
Lowest price! Over 2000 bought. eBay (newegg) has a Xbox One S 500GB Console Minecraft Bundle Sale $199.99 free shipping. Expires soon. $300+tax at amazon. Highly Rated 4.8 out of 5 stars. 30 day returns.
- This cost $250 for the console alone during Black Friday.
Xbox One S Specifications
- 4K Support
- Stream 4K video from Netflix and amazon Video
- Play 4K Ultra HD Blu-Ray movies
- 40% smaller package than the original console
- High Dynamic Range
- Experience the enhanced comfort of the new Xbox Wireless Controller, featuring textured grip and Bluetooth technology.
Includes these titles: Minecraft
Posted: February 19, 2017 9:00 AM PST
Apple Black Friday 2015 Deals
Although Apple offered free gift cards with the purchase of select products - iPad Air 2 ($75), iPad Mini 4 ($50), Walmart and Target both had way better gift cards available on the same day. Target esd offering a free $150 gift card with an iPad Air 2. The same thing happened in 2014.
So - one would think the best strategy for Apple products in 2014 is to ditch the Apple store in favor of major retailers? Maybe, but better deals showed up just 14 days after Black Friday - with deeper discounts and zero sales tax. And finally, Apple did not even offer a sale on CyberMonday.
Gap Black Friday 2015 Sales
Gap has a “50% off Everything” sale in 2015. The later had many other sales of the type Save up to 50% off plus an extra 40% off. These were better on the select sale items, but the 50% off was a lot better on generate merchandise.
iPad Air 2 from Best Buy $100 - $125 off. Better than Apple plus it is a real discount.
Free Target Gift Card with iPad Mini 4 ($100), iPad Mini 2 ($80), iPad Air 2 ($150), or Apple Watch ($100) - These were better than Apple and were not matched until well into 2016.
Staples had an iPad Air 2 64GB $449 ($599) Apply Visa Checkout $25 off = $424. A stellar price
Also an iPad Mini 4 16GB $299 ($399), much better than a gift card.
Target had Apple TV 25% off - New 2015 version $149.25 ($199) - Also a very good price, not matched until 2016.
Black Friday Tablet/E-Readers Deals
Amazon Kindle Fire HD 7in 8GB Tablet from Best Buy - $34.99 – Cheaper than Amazon until 2016.
Target had a Samsung Galaxy Tab A 9.7 16GB Tablet $229 ($299) Free $30 Gift Card. A very good price not matched for 6 months.
Black Friday Laptop Deals
Best Buy had a Dell Inspiron 15.6 Touchscreen Laptop Core i3 8GB/1TB Windows 10 $299.99 free shipping. A solid price even to this day.
Staples had very good laptop deals which sold out quickly. Each of these 3 deals were not equalled until mid 2016.
HP 14-ab166us 14" Laptop Intel Core i3 6GB 750GB Windows 10 $299.99 after $50 rebate. ($599)
Toshiba C55-C5380 15.6" Laptop Intel Core i5 8GB 750GB Windows 10 $399.99 after $250 rebate.
Toshiba C55-C5381 15.6" Laptop Intel Core i7 8GB 1TB Windows 10 $499.99 after $250 rebate.
Black Friday Video Game Deals
Near everyone was selling a PS4 Uncharted bundle for $299.99, save $50. This was beaten only after 5 months.
Xbox One $299 bundles were all over the place. The best deals from Microsoft, threw in a $60 gift code and game. Nothing equalled this.
These deals can be of good value, if and only if you like the bundled games. The prices of these holiday bundles held steady, probably due to minimum advertised pricing restrictions. On the other hand, there are plenty of video games on sale, making this a great time to buy software.
Black Friday HDTV Deals
Target Doorbuster Thursday: Westinghouse 32 LED HDTV $99.99 ($189) sold out fast and is just now being beat.
Best Buy Doorbuster Thursday: Toshiba 49L310U 49in 1080p HDTV $149.99 ($429.99) In store only. - Very cheap and still not beat.
Target Doorbuster Thursday: Element 43 LED HDTV $169.99 ($199) - Still not beat
Target Doorbuster Thursday: Westinghouse 55in 1080p 60Hz LCD HDTV DWM55F1G1 $249.99 ($599) (15830724) - Still not beat
Sears Doorbuster Thursday: RCA 40" Class 1080p 60Hz Rear-Lit LED HDTV $269 ($350) - Price beat after 6 months.
TVs were a bright spot for 2015 Black Friday.
Black Friday Smartphone Deals
Best Buy Thursday Doorbusters: $250 Gift Card with Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, S6 Edge+ plus they are on sale Verizon, Sprint, AT&T - With installment plan. A great deal and not really matched for 6 month.
Walmart in store: $100 savings, $100 Gift Card on any iPhone. AT&T Next Plan or Verizon Device Payment. Was a decent deal, but equalled in early 2016.
Go pro HERO4 Silver Action Camera $80 Gift Card, 64GB Memory Card $399.99 ($500) - Very good at the time.
We can see from the sample hot deals from Black Friday that most deals are good, but if missed, often come back around quickly. No need to fret.
Sometimes items are one off that are brought in for holidays. Video game bundles and cheap console games are a good bet during Black Friday.
Black Friday is No Longer the Best Sale of the Year
As we have shown, similar or better deals can be had throughout the year. So what’s the point of Black Friday?
We at Buyvia still believe Black Friday can save you money - but you have to set your expectations. If you expect to find the lowest possible price of the year on your favorite items, you are in for a disappointment. But if you are looking for good deals on your holiday list, Black Friday is still a great way to save money.
If you are looking for the best possible price on specific items, do your research. Often web based retailers will trump their retail competition because they pass the decreased cost of overhead onto their consumers. For the best possible deals, sign up here to receive personal deal alerts from Buyvia.
Do you have a comment or a different experience with Black Friday?
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