Black Friday: Real Deals or Marketing Fluff?

It’s another year of Black Friday mania, but is this all a benefit for the consumer … or retailer?

With all the advertising that is going on, you would think most retailers are giving away stuff for free. However, in terms of consumer bargains, lots of the deals don’t really seem to deliver.

Buyers Beware

I’m sure there are a few steals to be had, but in general, buyers should beware. Money Saving Expert and Which? (the consumer rights site) have both reported that some deals are not as good as advertised. Last year, Which? published a study reporting that over 50% of “Black Deals” had been the same price or cheaper earlier in the year.

While Black Friday deals might suit many online retailers to draw people into the store, I can’t help feeling that this kind of promotional activity is dragging everyone down to the lowest common denominator – price.

For many of the small, independent retailers, giving away products at silly prices just isn’t an option. However, as some of the deals don’t seem to be quite as good as they appear, many retailers don’t need to panic about pricing as much as the marketing hype may have you believe.

Once all this is over, hopefully we can go back to educating consumers about value, service and other benefits, as opposed to getting a few cheap deals on a particular day in the year. After all, one weekend is not going to make a business.

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