Black Friday is only a week away, and I can’t say I’m very happy about it. So, today’s poll is about our feelings for Black Friday.
Yet, my disdain towards this buying period is not unwarranted. You see, back in my home country of Greece, Black Friday is a relatively new import, as is the case with many other countries. It has only been since 2015 that stores started trying out this kind of discounts, and consumers were alienated by the artificial price fluctuations before and after the event.
Stores did not exactly know how to promote the idea, using the discounts mostly as bait to lure customers to their stores. But to put everything in perspective, I have a small personal story to share.
Black Friday: Great opportunities can lead to disappointment.
Back in 2018, in the middle of a budget-crippling DRAM chip shortage, I was in desperate need of a GPU. So, I patiently waited for Black Friday deals and set my sights on exactly what I wanted: A brand new AMD RX 570 for a modest $100 discount. As the day came closer, listings started disappearing from reservations with only a few, in-store pieces left.
Anxiety skyrocketed. I rushed to the store only to be told that the online listing was wrong, and that there was no inventory left! I felt hot burning rage, boiling inside me as the clerk wittingly pushed me to buy a similar product for a smaller discount.
So I left the store feeling gutted. I had the fear that I would not be able to find this GPU for such a good price for the next months. Honestly, every experience with Black Friday since then has been similarly uncomfortable.
It was like the entire market was being rigged to force me to participate in the deals craze. This is something called Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO) and my colleague Antoine Engels explains it excellently in his latest opinion piece.
You probably have similar experiences, and it really makes me wonder if people actually enjoy Black Friday?
Black Friday 2021: Will shortages spoil discounts?
The next thing that comes to mind has to do with expectations surrounding this year’s discounts. Supply chains are strained world-wide and that has caused issues in many consumer products. Electronics are particularly affected, which makes us very skeptical towards the quality of this year’s discounts.
The above fact has made me reconsider what I feel like is a good deal. In the past I would have ignored anything under a 30% discount, this year? Even 20% will make me rejoice with consumerism induced serotonin.
Bonus question for the disheartened:
Predatory clerk practices, artificial shortages, real shortages and price mark-ups come hand in hand with Black Friday. Recalling my own personal experiences, I have collected quite a few retail horror stories that I share with others from time to time.
I understand though that this is only one side of the coin. So, I would love to hear your Black Friday stories, whether they are nerve-racking horrors or successful deal hunts! Next week I’m going to handpick the best ones from every domain and feature them with the results. The comment section is yours.
That is everything for this week, don’t forget to check back in Monday for the results. Until then, happy deal hunting!