The End of Black Friday as We Know It

Black Friday, known for it’s deals, crowds, and lack of sleep, is the unofficial start day of the holiday season. At least that’s what it was before 2020: the year of reinventing “normal.” Brands are being put to the task of saving the holidays, and that calls for a revamp of Black Friday. But don’t worry, when one doorbuster closes, another one opens.

3 Months for the Price of 1 Day:

To avoid the crazy crowds that one-day deals attract, Walmart, Target, Lowes, Best Buy, and other big retailers announced they would be closed on Thanksgiving. These brands are pivoting from one-day deals to weeks and even months of Black Friday sales. This long stretch of deals through October, November, and December will help ease shoppers’ anxiety about crowds, control the spread of Covid-19, and make sure people get their holiday shopping done before heavier pandemic restrictions take place.

Deal Days:

In an ad that aired in late October, Target announced that their Deal Days would last all November with new deals each week, and a price match on anything considered a Black Friday Deal until Christmas Eve. Target claims that this is “Black Friday Now,” and they’re not wrong. Black Friday has to be replaced with something, and Deal Days is its successor. Walmart has already hosted 2 separate “Big Save” events; Best Buy is offering Black Friday price matches; and Home Depot started running holiday sales 2 months ago. All of this before Thanksgiving.

Advantages / Disadvantages:

With the revamp of Black Friday, advantages and disadvantages seem inevitable for both consumers and brands. The obvious advantage for everyone is the prevention of an influx of Covid-19 cases. But smaller crowds also bring a more curated and flexible shopping experience to consumers. And sales being spread over 3 months also brings this disadvantage: maintaining inventory and distribution. Instead of having inventory for one-day sales, they’re going to need 3 months worth. This could lead to disappointments for their valuable customers preparing for the holidays.

We don’t know who thought it was a good idea to go shopping for 24 hours right after eating a whole turkey full of tryptophan, but we think this new way of Black Friday makes much more sense. We wish you a happy 3 months of shopping, and remind you to wear a mask!