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The Blue & Gray Press | July 26, 2017

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Should Black Friday take a back seat? Yes.

Should Black Friday take a back seat? Yes.

By AMIR KOREHI 

Black Friday is a day known for the lowest prices on the season’s hottest items. It is a day that motivates shoppers to leave their Thanksgiving meals to go line up outside a store in hopes of being the first person in the door and saving some money.

Retailers see Black Friday as one of the year’s largest shopping days, and the official start to the holiday shopping season. With so much surrounding the day, the question has been asked, should Black Friday remain, or should it be cut from our calendars?

I believe we should rid ourselves of Black Friday, either immediately or gradually scale back over the next few years until it is no longer important. While it is true Black Friday accounts for a huge amount of sales for retailers, there are horror stories that come out of it from customers and employees. Many retailers have started opening as early as 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day compared to the traditional time of midnight to 6 a.m.

This means employees and customers have to leave their families earlier to go to work or start shopping. Lining up for hours on cold November nights is something nobody wants to do, and may lead to people getting agitated.

These angry shoppers have been known to yell at employees, beat on doors in attempts to get in earlier or even fight other customers in line. When doors finally do open and the rush of buyers flood inside, there is a risk for people to get trampled, and each year stories emerge of injuries as a result of Black Friday. With all the risk to workers and buyers only in hopes to save money on goods, Black Friday is more of a threat than a help to consumers.

A few years ago retailers took notice of the risk of shopping in store and the rising trend of online shopping, and Cyber Monday was created. Cyber Monday is the Monday following Black Friday, and is known as a day for all online retailers to have sales. The event has become a massive day for shoppers to look forward to because the only things needed to take full advantage of it are a computer and credit card. With fewer risks of trouble, the ability to shop at your own pace, and immediate feedback on inventory numbers, Cyber Monday is the greater alternative to Black Friday.

The deals are often better, because shoppers have the ability to quickly compare prices across multiple sites compared to being stuck in a single store on Black Friday. With the faster response and easier way to shop, Cyber Monday has grown to outweigh Black Friday in many younger consumers eyes, and the trend will only continue to grow as shoppers put an emphasis on online shopping.

Black Friday is becoming more of a chore for shoppers compared to what it once was. There are no more “never seen before deals” that force consumers into long lines.

The introduction of Cyber Monday is saving both employees and customers the task of leaving their families to go to a store and benefitting everyone. Black Friday is taking a back seat in the modern consumers minds, and the gap will only continue to grow as retailers focus on Cyber Monday deals.

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