Tech Tip: Buyer Beware

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are only a few days away! Everyone is getting their shopping lists ready, and hoping they can find a great deal in stores or online. 

With over 10 years of retail and marketing experience, I’m aware that in most instances Black Friday sales are no better, if not worse than basic sales found throughout the year. Not to say a good deal can’t be found, you just have to be careful and do your research first. This year I decided to take my chances and see if I could find a few good deals. After watching prices, I found I would have been better off buying a few month ago. In  the last week, the sale price of a phone went up 25%, and the original price went up as well. This allows the seller to mark the price back down on Friday and make it look like the customer is getting a better deal. 

Repercussions of "deals"

Not only are companies tricking you into spending more money on Black Friday, you are spending more for less. The good "deals" tend to be on off name brands, or on specially made items. These items are produced specifically to be sold at a lower price, typically utilizing lower quality parts to keep the cost down. That 75% off laptop or TV might be cheaper than it's counterparts upfront, but in the long run, it will cost you more money. These items usually need to be replaced or serviced within a year if a serviceman will even touch the item. 

What this means for you, the consumer

As a consumer, you need to be extra vigilant when looking for deals. Being aware of the tactics used by stores is half the battle.

There are a variety of tactics stores use on Black Friday, including:

  • Special made products with unique SKU's
  • Off brand big ticket items 
  • Raising base value for a larger discount
  • Low quantities or non-existent doorbuster items
  • Lower prices on select items and markups on the rest

Now that you know some of the tactics hopefully you will find truly good deals this shopping season.