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  • Writer's pictureAntonise De Wet

Black Friday pitfalls to watch out for

It's crucial to have a shopping plan if you're going to brave the stores on Black Friday. By doing this, you can avoid long lineups and get better bargains for every person on your gift list. The amount of money spent on Black Friday rises yearly. In 2019, 124 million individuals visited retailers during the duration of Thanksgiving weekend, with 84.2 million doing their shopping on Black Friday itself. In 2020, the epidemic may have impacted in-store sales, but it had the reverse effect for internet merchants.

There are other ways to celebrate the season and engage in the spirit of giving, with much less impact, while companies continue to wave hefty discounts, repetitious advertising, and eye-catching products to consumers.

  • Purchase with purpose. Don't purchase a product simply because it is available or because it is inexpensive.

  • Distribute your purchases. Clearly, Black Friday purchasing causes issues with the supply chain. Buying in advance and allowing for slow shipping reduce carbon emissions. Free two-day shipping simply benefits the client; the actual burden is on the environment.

  • Favor small companies over big-box retailers. Individually owned businesses frequently use sustainable practices and disclose where their products were sourced.

Here are some mistakes to avoid this Black Friday:

1. Buying from dodgy sites

To prevent a scam website, it is important to stay with well-known and trustworthy retailers.

However, there are steps you can take to assist safeguard yourself if you want to purchase from an unknown retailer:

  • If a store appears to be too good to be true, it probably is. Scam websites frequently use claims of absurdly low pricing for phony or potentially dangerous goods, or even goods that don't exist, to entice clients.

  • Watch for cautionary notices at the location. Poor English, strange-sounding language, or missing retailer contact information are a few examples.

  • Find out when the business was founded. You can check the legitimacy of UK-based sellers using Companies House.

  • Read the seller's testimonials. Verify the seller's legitimacy, reputation, and positive feedback by reading reviews. Learn how to recognize a false review, and be wary of purchases made after seeing several hastily produced, excessively positive five-star ratings.

  • Avoid purchasing items with new brand names. To verify the credibility of new brands, do more research.

2. Not keeping an eye out for fraud

Scammers frequently target the winter shopping period, and particularly Black Friday. You must be able to recognize and avoid frauds if you want to keep yourself safe online.

Watch out for advertisements for fresh businesses or brands in your social media feeds or for a new account promoting an established company. The best technique to verify if an advertisement appears to be from an authentic brand is to make sure that the URL begins with the brand's actual domain name.

Watch out for any unusual texts, emails, or pop-ups as they are probably scammers. In order to trick you into visiting a fake website, scammers may pose as a major corporation like Amazon or the Royal Mail. They typically claim that you owe them money or that there is a problem with your delivery. If you suspect a message you've received may be a scam, it's critical that you refrain from participating or clicking any links.

3. Ignoring the T&Cs

It's not hard to understand why 80% of the more than 1,000 Which? Connect Panel members who participated in the online survey on T&Cs never or infrequently read them. Multiple pages of legalese can be found in many T&Cs. It's important to at least be aware of your rights regarding returns and refunds in case there is a problem, especially if you're purchasing a sizable or expensive item. We're not advocating that you read every document word for word.

4. Considering Black Friday to be the best shopping day of the year

Although Black Friday can bring up some excellent bargains, it may not always be the greatest time to make a purchase. Which determined that none of the 113 tech products whose prices it examined last year were the cheapest on Black Friday. The majority of them were offered at comparable prices at other times of the year, which means that the other half actually cost more during the Black Friday deals. Do not feel compelled to buy just because a bargain appears to be a dazzling one. Till you locate one you like, shop around and compare pricing.


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