Black Friday is a great day for picking up some bargains. Whether you’re looking for a new vacuum cleaner or a state-of-the-art TV, you can save yourself an enormous amount of money if you plan ahead. But not everything in the Black Friday garden is rosy.
In fact, there are certain items that should never be on your Black Friday shopping list. Why? Because they rarely offer real value. In fact, there are often better times of the year to purchase these items.
Consumer goods, fashion, household appliances and tech are all usually great Black Friday shopping categories. Retailers put on some spectacular deals to get you in their stores. They also do this in order to clear our their inventories for new lines and new Christmas stock.
But not all retail businesses work in the same way. While they might advertise Black Friday deals, the truth is that their goods are often available for even less at other times of the year.
To help you stay on the right side of successful bargain hunting, we’ve put together a list of the things you shouldn’t buy on Black Friday. While there will always be exceptions, these purchases tend to deliver better value at different times of the year.
Jewellery stores are often at the forefront of Black Friday marketing campaigns. They advertise their offers aggressively like any other retailer. But this isn’t the natural time of year to buy necklaces, rings and brooches.
Most jewellery is bought for someone else. These purchases are often meant for special occasions such as Christmas, weddings and Christenings. Jewellery stores do offer discounts on Black Friday, but they often offer even better deals during the wedding season and just before Christmas.
By all means check out what your local jewellers are offering this Black Friday. But proceed with caution. If you can, try to find out what deals local retailers were offering last Christmas — and during the previous summer.
Furniture retailers in Europe have really bought into the Black Friday phenomenon. But November isn’t a particularly good time of year for shops in the sector. People are more concerned with saving for Christmas than buying sofas and dining tables.
The best time for furniture retailers is just after New Year. This is when people start thinking about the year ahead. And this is when you’ll find the deepest discounts. Indeed, a lot of the biggest sale events in UK furniture stores begin on Boxing Day. Hold your nerve, and wait until then — unless the Black Friday deal in question is simply too good to miss.
The demand for flooring is surprisingly high during the approach to Christmas. People like to give their home a makeover before welcoming guests over the festive period. Flooring seems to be one of the features that delivers the desired effect.
Because flooring retailers tend to be busy at this time of year, they aren’t all that keen on offering significant discounts. The Black Friday deals they do have on tend to involve their least popular or discontinued lines.
Summer is a relatively slow period for these retailers — when consumers are more interested in holidays and leisure time. If you can, hold off on buying your flooring until then.
4. Gift Cards
Gift cards are more popular than ever. Supermarkets sell a huge array of them these days — for everything from chain restaurants to huge online stores. This is a great gift idea for the person in your life that seems to have everything. But if you’re buying a gift card for Christmas, you should probably wait until nearer the time.
You might find some deals on Black Friday. But most retailers offer the best discounts during the final fortnight before Christmas Day. You might pick up even bigger discounts and special offers on gift cards during the New Year sales.
5. Video games
According to Deal News, 55% of the year’s best deals on video games emerge during the Christmas period. Why is this? Most big video games have been around for quite a while by the time Christmas comes around. And because they’re very popular gifts, retailers slash prices in order to get people into their stores. They do this in the hope that you’ll make other purchases while you’re there.
6. Fitness equipment
The health and fitness industry treats the aftermath of the Christmas period as a golden marketing opportunity. This is a time of year when people want to lose weight and make up for the excesses of the festive period.
Gyms, health food companies and fitness equipment retailers tap into this sense of guilt and regret — and they sweeten the deal with some incredible discounts.
7. Winter fashions
Black Friday arrives in the middle of winter. The demand for big coats, warm jumpers, scarves and gloves is always high at this time of the year. This means retailers don’t need to discount all that much — even if they claim they do as part of Black Friday promotions.
But when the temperatures start to rise in the spring, retailers can’t shift these warmer fashions. In order to liquidate their stock and make way for new lines, stores slash prices by up to 90%. While it might feel counter intuitive to buy your winter coat in May, you’ll save yourself a huge amount of money by doing so.
8. Christmas decorations
Black Friday campaigns might offer seemingly great discounts on Christmas decorations. But it’s important to remember that the big day is only a few weeks away. While you might save a little money on your tinsel and baubles, it’ll be nothing compared to what you can save in January.
Supermarkets and department stores never like to hold onto stock for too long. They like to remain as liquid as possible, and they always need space in their stock rooms for seasonal stock and everyday purchases. They certainly don’t want to have Christmas trees getting in everyone’s way during the summer.
If you want new Christmas decorations, make do with what you have for another year. Then, in January, you’ll be able to pick up the items you need at a fraction of the “discounted” prices advertised on Black Friday.
You’ll find some incredible discounts and special offers on Black Friday if you know where to look. But don’t be under any illusion. Some purchases are best made at different times of the year.