Black Friday & Cyber Monday: Love It or Leave It?

There’s no debating that everyone loves a good deal. The idea of getting an item at a percentage of its normal price is so appealing that millions of Americans participate in the madness of Black Friday and Cyber Monday year in and year out. This year, the sales actually began on Thanksgiving evening so retailers and shoppers alike could get a leg up on the holiday season. Men, women, and families lined up outside of stores or camped out in front of their computer screens from “Black Friday” until “Cyber Monday” in hopes of scoring the best deals possible. 

People seem to love the excitement and competition surrounding finding the best deal of the season, but unfortunately, some people’s enthusiasm and overly aggressive spirits have led these shopping days to become unsafe.  Crime during Black Friday and Cyber Monday gets worse every year with people being trampled and even killed when store doors open. Fights have erupted over the season’s hot toys, and last Thursday, a couple was run over in a Walmart parking lot while trying to beat the Black Friday crowds. Is 20 percent off a flat screen TV really worth the danger?

Many would argue that yes, the $15 off an item is definitely worth the risk, but others vow to not even leave their homes once the sales start. While Black Friday does bring in large amounts of revenue for businesses, the negative stigma it holds can be damaging to a business’ image. Just as every coin has two sides, so does Black Friday and Cyber Monday: you either love it or hate it.

Some people resent companies for taking part in Black Friday and Cyber Monday craziness and argue that the deals aren’t even that spectacular. There have been complaints that these days promote impulse buying and put pressure on consumers to purchase things they don’t actually need. Businesses will put an item on sale that their consumers don’t generally want, but feel pressured to buy because it’s half off for 24 hours only. During a time that’s supposed to be joyous, the sales can add an unwanted stress.

Another important issue surrounding Black Friday is the treatment of the employees of the companies that participate in the heavy sales. This year, Walmart gained unwanted media attention because its workers were threatening to boycott working during the holiday season, starting on Black Friday, due to the outrageous extended hours they are forced to work. It hurts a company’s image when its employees complain they are being overworked and treated unfairly, a real complaint many have during these types of sales.

Even though Black Friday and Cyber Monday bring in billions of dollars nationwide, companies also lose customers and encounter many business-related difficulties during this time. Does the negative light that is shed on these sales have a large enough influence to actually impact a company and hurt its reputation? Or will the sales always prevail? Do you judge companies who participate in Black Friday or Cyber Monday, or do you appreciate them offering such great deals to their customers? Let us know on our Facebook page!

If you aren’t a fan of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, don’t worry, these shoppig days are officially over, meaning you can now check your inbox without the fear of receiving hundreds of emails about “today’s deal.” If you are one that loves the sales, then you’re in luck, because until January, the holidays will provide continuous discounts for shoppers! Happy hunting!