Black Friday and Cyber Monday are popular shopping days that occur annually on Friday and Monday, respectively, after the Thanksgiving holiday. They are collectively known as Thanksgiving shopping weekends, which offer incredible deals, massive discounts, and a shopping frenzy that kicks off the holiday season. It is often considered the beginning of the Christmas shopping season. On Black Friday, many retailers offer significant discounts and promotions, attracting large crowds of shoppers in-store. Similarly, on Cyber Monday, online retailers run heavy discount sale campaigns. This annual retail extravaganza, originating in the United States, has now transcended borders, captivating shoppers worldwide.
The Origins of Black Friday:
The term “Black Friday originated in the 1960s and marked the chaotic shopping day that follows Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving traditionally marks the beginning of the Christmas shopping season, with retailers offering steep discounts to attract customers. It is believed that retailers would operate at a financial loss (in the red) for most of the year, but on the day after Thanksgiving, they would begin to turn a profit (in the black) due to the increased holiday shopping. Thus the term “Black Friday”.
The In-Store Shopping Experience:
Over the years, Black Friday has been associated with early morning store openings, huge queues in front of stores, and rushing shoppers trying to grab the best deals. The atmosphere in the stores is electric, with limited-time deals and competitive shoppers rushing for coveted items. While the in-store experience remains a hallmark of Black Friday, the rise of online shopping and Cyber Monday is taking its place in shopping trends and has brought about a significant shift in consumer behavior.
The Rise of Cyber Monday:
In recent years, there has been a noticeable shift from traditional in-store shopping to online purchases. The convenience of shopping from home, avoiding crowds, and gaining access to exclusive online deals has fueled the growth of Cyber Monday. Retailers have adapted to this trend by offering not only in-store promotions but also online-exclusive discounts, enticing a broader audience of digital shoppers.
The shopping trend that began in the United States has now become a global shopping event. Retailers worldwide have adopted the concept of Black Friday and Cyber Monday and offer heavy discounts to customers around the globe. This globalization has also led to the diversification of sellable items. As sellers and commodities are not limited to the United States, they have gone global.
Consumer Tips for Navigating the Shopping Weekend:
- Plan Ahead: Create a shopping list of the items you need. Search for the availability of those items in nearby stores or online portals.
- Compare Prices: As every store or website offers deals during this shopping season, always compare the prices at multiple stores before finalizing your purchase. You can always take advantage of the price reveal concept that is getting popular before the start of online sales.
- Online Security: Shop from secure websites to protect your personal information. You must not share your credit card number or personal details with anyone. Also, make payments using secure sites. While purchasing from a new website, opt for cash on delivery as a mode of payment.
- Set a Budget: It’s easy to get carried away with the excitement of deals, so set a budget to avoid overspending.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday have evolved from mere shopping days to cultural phenomena that transcend borders. Whether you prefer the thrill of in-store shopping or the convenience of online deals, this weekend offers something for everyone.
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