Since it was first officially established as a day for discounted shopping in the USA back in the 1960s, Black Friday has become associated with a feeding frenzy for bargains.
“But, even with prices slashed well below the norm, the day often ends with impulse buys that consumers may still come to regret,” says Aimee Miller, Marketing and Sales Manager for Teljoy, an online retailer for home electronics, appliances and furniture.
However, believes Miller, with careful planning and sensible assessment of your needs versus your financial situation, as a customer in-the-know you really can get the best of all worlds on 29th November – this year’s Black Friday date.
To ensure consumers are able to achieve this goal, the following tips are Miller’s top suggestions for doing this like a financial pro, with the least amount of stress possible to kit out your home with state-of-the-art goods.
DISTINGUISH BETWEEN YOUR WANTS AND NEEDS, AND WHAT YOU CAN AFFORD
First and foremost, make a list of the things you really need versus the things that are “nice to haves” but not essential to your lifestyle. Give priority to the must-haves. Then, set a budget for how much you can afford to spend, particularly if you’re planning a long-term, monthly financial commitments, such as buying a large appliance on hire purchase from a big retailer, or via a rent-to-own model such as the one Teljoy offers.
It’s worth remembering that one of the major benefits of a rent-to-own model is that contracts run only on a month-to-month basis, with none of the additional finance charges which most hire-purchase agreements add on to the purchase price. A rent-to-own model also means that the contract can be upgraded, downgraded or even cancelled at any time, to suit your financial situation or changes. “In other words, you know the budget you’ve set aside for a Black Friday acquisition can be spent entirely on that item and not on the additional costs of financing it,” notes Miller.
DO YOUR RESEARCH
You’ll only know if you’re truly getting a bargain on Black Friday if you know what items would cost on any other day of the week. Shop around, in store and online, to see what each of the major retailers can offer on any normal day. You will also discover, as the day draws closer, that a number of retailers will turn Black Friday into an extended event that will run for more than just one day.
SHOP ONLINE TO AVOID THE CROWDS
The best of all worlds would be to find a retailer that not only enables you to search online beforehand to compare prices, but that also enables you to do your Black Friday shopping online too. This is the best way to avoid both the crowds that will descend on retail outlets as well as the hand-to-hand combat over items on the floor.
A website such as PriceCheck also enables consumers to search across multiple retailers, brands and products for the best Black Friday deals around. The site lists products from over 600 merchants country-wide, from Makro and MRP Sport to purely online retailers such as Superbalist and Takealot.
Ideally, notes Miller: “Shoppers looking for Black Friday deals need to explore all avenues possible, and many retailers will also start to promote their Black Friday specials on social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and even via their subscription-based newsletters, if they have these.
“At Teljoy, for example, we keep our customers regularly informed of specials via our newsletter and Facebook pages, and these will include all our Black Friday specials, which will run over the course of a number of days (25 November – 2 December 2019, including Cyber Monday).”
Online shopping also means that shoppers who live in areas outside the main bricks-and-mortar retail outlets will also be able to enjoy Black Friday specials.
SHOP WHERE YOU GET THE BEST OVERALL DEALS
This is particularly important for “big ticket” household items that may require delivery and set-up: for example, does your amazing Black Friday deal also include the delivery cost of your new lounge suite? Or the set-up of your new TV and sound system? Hidden costs could be added to these that make the so-called special not so special after all, warns Miller.
“Teljoy offers these services inclusive of our rent-to-own agreements, so the Black Friday price you see is the only cost. It’s important to check on the details to ensure you are actually getting the real deal you think you’re getting, and using every cent of your available budget on getting the household items you need.”