Black Friday is as ingrained in American culture as the 4th of July and baseball. But much like everything in 2020, the massive day after Thanksgiving event is changing dramatically. So, if your heart is set on grabbing those big-ticket deals and sales, expect to do it from the comfort of your couch instead of the packed lines of a Walmart check-out lane.
So long brick and mortar!
Many companies have already announced that they will be closed on Thanksgiving Day.
Before you plan on making the trip out and going to brick and mortar stores, you might want to call ahead or check online. Companies such as Walmart, Target, and Kohl’s, who were open on Thanksgiving Day last year, are taking precautions and keeping their doors closed that day.
Black Friday has been losing its traction and clout for years now, as consumer spending habits shift to digital shopping, where they have more visibility, options, and time to browse and shop for better deals. Even before COVID-19 restrictions, online Black Friday shopping was already gaining traction. According to Adobe Insights, last year’s Black Friday brought in $11.9 billion in online sales, which was about a 20.2% increase over 2018. But now with the strain of the COVID crisis, most of the large retailers are using circumstances to innovate and change with the ever-shifting landscape of online shopping.
Challenges always lead to innovation.
There hasn’t been a challenge as daunting as the coronavirus pandemic in our lifetimes though.
In lieu of packed parking lots and shoulder to shoulder lines turning into super spreader events, companies have started nudging customers to start their holiday shopping earlier and have it be online.
Amazon began a trend back in 2015 with the start of its annual Prime Day, a two-day event of special saving for all of its Prime users. Since then, many companies have imitated the event with their own versions such as Target’s “Deals Day” or Walmart’s “Big Save”.
How do businesses make both a profit and stay safe this holiday season?
The current strategy is two-fold: Go big on online shopping and make it last even longer than usual.
Prime Day took place October 13th through the 14th, after months of delays from its usual July showing. Walmart hosted it’s “Big Save” event October 11th through October 15th, with the announcement of two extra online Black Friday shopping days the 4th and 11th of November. Target followed the trend with it’s “Deals Day” occurring October 13th and 14th, with prices still staying relatively low afterward. These companies, and businesses across the whole of the U.S., already had e-commerce sites up, with consistent deals and sales events. This year, because of the circumstances we all face, seems to be the year that an American tradition shifts to being wholly online (or rather, that would be the best-case scenario).
Nothing is perfect!
We’re expecting to come across some technical issues as we move into this holiday season.
Sure, you won’t have to sucker punch an old lady to get your hands on an Xbox or PlayStation but like any other time you have to deal with technology, expect a handful of bugs and issues to pop up. Servers might get overloaded with an influx of users getting in on the holiday savings. Sites might run slower or crash altogether. Or that premium deal you had your eyes on might just go out of stock before you have the chance to even enter your credit card information. It’ll be a lot for all of us to handle, the shoppers trying to find the perfect gifts for their friends and family and the poor developers behind the scenes trying to keep sites up so that said shoppers can buy said perfect gifts.
Change is welcome in 2020.
We get it. These are big moves and changes for all of us.
Gone is the one-day hysteria of Black Friday. Here comes a more relaxed, seemingly, month long endeavor. Where deals are made by all to be had by all for so much longer than a single day.
Moving online has its perks:
• There’s more time spent at home, sharing holiday moments with loved ones (this is what it’s all about, right?).
• We have more accessible and longer lasting deals
• Who doesn’t want the comfort of browsing virtual shelves in your pajamas from the couch?
• Staying safe. Staying healthy. Staying home as we all do our part in handling this pandemic while trying to keep a sense of normalcy in our lives.
We’re all on this journey together. We’ve got a few tricks up our sleeves ourselves for this holiday season over here at DAY Vision. Whether you’re brick and mortar, an online service, or even an e-commerce store, stop by our site and check out our past work! We’d love to chat about your creative options moving forward in a changing world like this!