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Black Friday Predictions for 2016
Posted October 1, 2016 by GottaDeal.com Staff
This year marks our 13th year covering Black Friday here on GottaDeal.com. As we do every year, we’ll use our past Black Friday experiences and general deal hunting skills to come up with a set of predictions for what you can expect on Black Friday this year, both in stores and via the many great online sales to come.
We post hundreds of deals each week all year long on GottaDeal.com, which makes it possible to accurately predict what kind of deals will likely appear in Black Friday ads this year. We also consider the opinions and predictions of many of our forum members when compiling these predictions.
Last year we saw many stores continue to open earlier in the day on Thursday, much to the dismay of those Black Friday shoppers that wish to enjoy Thanksgiving at home. Major retailers such as Best Buy, Walmart, Target, Kohl’s and Toys R Us opened at 5pm or 6pm. Some stores continue to fall on the side of tradition with Friday morning openings, including Lowe’s, Costco and Sam’s Club.
This year we see this trend continuing, and on average we predict stores will open about an hour earlier than last year. We see the major stores opening at 4pm or 5pm on Thanksgiving this year. We also believe a few stores that have historically avoided Thursday openings will cave in to the possibilities of increased sales and open on Thursday this year.
When it comes to the quality of deals, we're not expecting a noticeable increase in the “hotness” of deals in this year’s ads. We thing the level of deals will be quite similar to what we saw last year. We also expect more retailers to focus more of their attention (and stock levels) on the online component of their Black Friday sale.
The primary reason why sales were down on in stores Black Friday last year was due to retailers ramping up holiday sales earlier than ever, starting in many cases at the beginning of November. This, combined with a big increase in online sales led to in-store sales falling flat.
We expect these earlier sales to continue, and we think the deals offered earlier in the month will be even better than last year, leading to more pre-Black Friday revenue for retailers and more deals for shoppers. These pre-Black Friday sales will be available both in stores and online.
We’ve also seen the continuing trend of certain retailers using Black Friday to hype up lackluster sale events throughout the year, with taglines such as “Black Friday in July”, however we have yet to see any of these sales amount to anything even approaching the traditional November sales. Unlike these disappointing sales, we expect early November deals to be worth checking out.
From 2013 to 2015, many of the top retailers including Walmart, Best Buy, Target and Kohl’s decided to release their Black Friday ads early, and they all did it within a crazy 24 hour period. We expect this to likely be the case again this year, so mark November 7th and 8th on your calendar as the days when the hottest ads will most likely be leaked.
While overall retail numbers have been relatively stagnant the past few years, online shopping continues to see huge growth with plenty of room to grow even more. Last year saw a massive increase in online sales for Thanksgiving and Black Friday and we expect an even bigger jump this year.
We’ve consistently found November to be the best month of the year for online deals. We’re expecting some great deals all month long with sales continuing through the first half of December. Keep in mind that despite the name, online Black Friday sales typically start on Wednesday of that week, so if you wait until Friday to do your online shopping, you’ll be missing out on the best online Black Friday deals.
The sheer number of sales and deals offered online can be overwhelming, especially for those who are not as experienced with online shopping. As always we’ll be here to help you by analyzing the sales and letting you know about the best ones we find so you can score the top deals before they sell out.
Check the links below for our exclusive predictions for the most popular items this year in major product categories:message boards.