It seems that terms like “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday” no longer refer to specific days of the year, but rather they have become umbrella terms to refer to major sales that are offered by retailers. Indeed, stores have been featuring promotions such as “September Black Friday” and “Early Black Friday”. Instead of just being one day a year, Black Friday is now offered on multiple occasions.
When people see the term “Black Friday”, they immediately think of big savings. This is true even if it’s not actually the Friday after Thanksgiving. Additionally, retailers are starting to recognize the problems of having just one major day of savings during the year. Instead of offering a single instance of massive savings, retailers are preferring to spread out the savings over a longer period of time. This means that the historic “Black Friday” is no longer as important as it once was. Now it appears that the terms “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday” are virtually meaningless.
In fact, “Black Friday” doesn’t even refer to Friday anymore. In more recent years, most stores have been opening up on Thanksgiving Day itself. The historic practice of lining up in the wee hours of the morning to get into a store that is offering outrageous deals is a thing of the past. If people do bother to hunt for extreme savings on “Black Friday”, it is actually on Thanksgiving Day.
Furthermore, many retailers are actually offering “Black Friday” deals weeks in advance of Thanksgiving. These might not be the heavy savings of the real Black Friday, but these “Early Black Friday” savings still attract many customers.
As for the internet, retailers have been moving up their promotions as well. Some online “Black Friday” deals have been offered as early as midnight on Wednesday, as soon as it is technically Thanksgiving. That’s right, now people can get real Black Friday deals before they even watch the Thanksgiving Day Parade. Oh, and the real “Cyber Monday” now starts on Sunday.
Needless to say, Black Friday is no longer a day. It is just a bunch of hype. When consumers hear the term they get excited. Even if the deals aren’t even that good, consumers are still enthusiastic because of the perception around the sales. People want to receive Black Friday savings, even if the savings aren’t on a Black Friday level.
This is an easy marketing technique that retailers are taking full advantage of. “Black Friday Deals” sound much more enticing than “Holiday Deals”. Consumers even realize this, as 65% of all American shoppers say that Black Friday is no longer as big of a deal as it used to be.
Additionally, more than 50% of all American shoppers say that they believe the best holiday deals will take place after the historic Black Friday has already passed. Indeed, the practice of “Cyber Week” following the week of “Black Friday” has become increasingly popular in recent times. Rather than rushing out to find deals, shoppers might be better off waiting for all the hype to pass.
While many consumers will still go out and partake in the historic American tradition, many people aren’t getting involved. Black Friday just isn’t as big as it used to be. Now there isn’t just one day of major savings, it’s a holiday season full of small sales.
RIP Black Friday, we won’t miss you.