Black Friday deals are rehashed year after year, and some retailers have a greater propensity for this than others, a recent report by WalletHub has shown.
The popular personal finance website which assists consumers in taking informed financial decisions has released the “2015 Black Friday Freshness Report” on Monday, November 16.
The purpose was to determine which companies are actually providing their customers with unique, never-seen-before bargains, and which are simply recycling old offers, under the pretense of novelty.
The analysis was prompted by the results of a survey conducted on BestBlackFriday.com, which showed that 81% of the respondents shared the opinion that Black Friday deals weren’t actually getting more attractive, in comparison with prior years.
In order to test this theory, WalletHub specialists reviewed print ads from 16 major retailers in the United States, in order to measure the percentage of copycat deals per company, as well as the price differences when advertising the same product.
By and large, it was discovered that approximately 11% of the bargains being advertised this year are actually identical to the ones in 2014.
For example, Target’s selling the same microwave oven, at a price tag of $40, with an eerily familiar $24.9 discount. Also, Sears is offering the “lowest price of the season” for its ProForm 415 Crosswalk treadmill: $399, after 33% cost reduction, just like the year before.
Another “repeat offender” is JCPenney, which has been advertising $2199.99 diamond rings, after an “extra 30% off” two years in a row. Best Buy is also trying to draw customers with the same smart refrigerator deal at $2099, while Macy has recycled its $1999 diamond bracelet.
From all the companies included in the study, Big Lots has shown the least preoccupation with providing its customers with original deals, by repeating around 16.4% of its bargains. Similarly unwilling to step out of the box are Costco (16.3%), Best Buy (14.6%), Ace Hardware (14.5%), and CVS Pharmacy (13.3%).
On the opposite side of the spectrum is Staples, which has only rehashed around 5.1% of its previous offers. JCPenney was also more likely to be creative, repeating approximately 5.3% of its Black Friday advertising. Wal-Mart recycled 7.9% of its discounts, while Target and Kohl both stood at 9.4%.
Overall, the highest savings are promised by JCPenney (68%), Kohl’s (66.7%), Stage (63.9%), Groupon (63.7%), Belk (59.5%) and Macy’s (56%).
The best bargains when it comes to clothes and accessories appear to be those from Groupon, who promises a discount of 84.2%, or from JCPenney, who advertises a 63.4% price reduction.
For those wishing to purchase a phone or a computer, OfficeMaxDepot and Wal-Mart seem like the best option, with average discounts of 40.36% and 35.23%, respectively.
Jewelry prices have been reduced the most by Groupon (84.91%) and Meijer (80.23%), while toys now cost the least at Belk (60.92% discount) and Stage (57.8% ).
Similarly, the best bargains for consumer electronics are at Groupon (63.43%), Stage (60.72%) and Kmart (60.72%), while appliances are now especially cheap at Macy’s (60.48% off), Stage (59.75%) and JCPenney (50.72%).
However, it must be noted that these supposed discounts might not accurately reflect reality. For instance, Kohl’s and JCPenney have been criticised in the past for using excessively high pre-discount prices, so that they can then dramatically slash them, and trick consumers into believing that the offer is unmissable.
The study might be an eye-opener for some, in anticipation of Black Friday, when bargain-hunters hope to find the best value for money, after a long year of over-inflated prices.
Finding out exactly how concerned each company is with staying true to its customers, by providing them with genuine bargains, might allow individuals to make more knowledgeable buying decisions, instead of being swept away by the discount shopping frenzy.
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