It’s November, which means it’s that time again: time for good food, football, and Black Friday savings.
For many deal enthusiasts, the good food and football are simply an added bonus to an already exciting month of heavily discounted Black Friday sale items.
But no matter how many Black Fridays you’ve experienced, you probably still have some misconceptions about a few things. Between gossip and the media, there have been a number of myths that have developed over the years that just simply aren’t 100% true.
As a smart shopper, knowing what’s true and what’s exaggerated when it comes to Black Friday is the first step to making smart choices that could end up saving you lots of money.
So here are 8 myths to keep in mind as you gear up for Black Friday this year.
Myth #1: All Black Friday shoppers get amazing deals
You may have realized this, but most Black Friday sales are chock full of “filler” deals that are not-so-shocking, but they sprinkle in just enough “lowest price ever” deals to make it appealing. Retailers are banking on the larger sales bringing you in the store with the hopes that you’ll grab a couple of lesser deals while you’re there.
Don’t get me wrong, you’ll save some money on Black Friday, but the truth is, many people don’t actually end up saving a boatload of money on Black Friday like they think they will.
The key to saving money on Black Friday is to be smart and know where to look for deals, including where to start your search for Black Friday discounts.
Myth #2: You have to prepare for a fight on Black Friday
We’ve all seen the stories in the news of people fighting, breaking things, and even shooting one another all in the name of shopping.
One website that keeps track of Black Friday injuries and deaths shows 7 deaths and 98 injuries on Black Friday since 2006. But look closer into each of the major incidents and you’ll see that a big chunk of the “injuries” were from two police pepper sprayings and other non-shopping incidents like car wrecks. The same is true for deaths attributed to Black Friday. Out of 7 deaths, maybe 1 of them occurred as a result of shopping. The others were related to other things like car wrecks and heart conditions.
The truth is, Black Friday shoppers aren’t as aggressive as the media tends to make them out to be. They’re just normal people trying to save some money. Remember, the media LOVES reporting incidents of violence on Black Friday because it’s entertaining.
Myth #3: Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year
It’s a common misconception that the media has a tendency to jump on, but Black Friday isn’t actually the biggest shopping day of the year. In fact, the biggest shopping day of the year sales-wise is the Saturday before Christmas. Turns out procrastination is more popular than saving money (not that the crowds are any smaller the Saturday before Christmas).
Myth #4: You have to wait in line to get Black Friday deals
If you hate long lines, or you’re not physically capable of fighting the crowds and waiting in line, there’s good news: you can get the same or similar Black Friday deals online. That means you don’t have to wait in line and you don’t have to wait until Cyber Monday either.
Amazon, Kohl’s, Target, and Sears are just a few stores who have their Black Friday deals online now. You still have to plan ahead and get the deals while they’re hot, but you don’t have to fight the traffic, crowds, and lines, and that’s a huge upside.
Myth #5: Shopping Black Friday deals online is easier
Although there are advantages to to shopping Black Friday deals online, there are a few caveats as well. First, items tend to sell out quick. After all, you’re now competing with exponentially more people as opposed to shopping in-store.
Second, websites can get overloaded and crash, and technical difficulties happen. By all means, take advantage of the deals you find online as a part of Black Friday sales, but it may serve you well to try to plan on grabbing a few items in-store just in case.
Myth #6: Higher-end retailers don’t participate in Black Friday
Don’t be fooled into thinking high-end and luxury retailers don’t participate in Black Friday deals. Brands like Apple, Neiman Marcus, and even Mercedes-Benz have been known to get in on the action and offer great deals on Black Friday as well.
Myth #7: Black Friday is killing Thanksgiving
It’s common to hear people complain about how retailers are starting Black Friday earlier and earlier, inching their way into our Thanksgiving holiday, leaving sacred family traditions to suffer from our greed. If you’re being honest, you’d say that’s not true at all.
The truth is, Black Friday deals tend to start later in the day on Thanksgiving, and they don’t infringe on most of our Thanksgiving meals. In fact, other activities like hunting and football are quick to replace time with family, yet no one bats an eye. If you look at Black Friday shopping as another activity to enjoy, it’s not a bad thing. And if you still can’t justify leaving Thanksgiving for Black Friday, do your shopping online. You won’t have to leave and no one will ever know the difference.
Myth #8: Black Friday is great for businesses
Black Friday is often cast as a day in which businesses make tons of money, therefore boosting the economy. In reality, businesses cut profit margins, stress their workforce, and cannibalize sales they would have gotten the rest of the day or weekend. That’s not to say Black Friday isn’t good for businesses, it’s just not the great economic boost some portrait it as.
This post originally appeared on the Dealspotr blog. Dealspotr is the most accurate coupon site that pays you to save. I’m @ReviewsbyCole on Dealspotr, use my link to join today and earn 5,000 bonus points.