Surviving Black Friday
Most businesses participate in hosting sales the weekend after Thanksgiving known as Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday.
It's the jumpstart to the holiday buying season and with inflation increasing prices, supply chain issues limiting stock of goods, there's plenty of anxiety related to Black Friday shopping.
For some, Black Friday is a day where you can get products at a discount, and for many it's a day where things you need become more affordable.
While it's easy to vilify Black Friday and those who participate, we need to also hold space for those small business that rely on these sales at the end of the year, and to individuals and families that are able to purchase the things they need at prices that are affordable to them.
We always encourage our community to shop second hand, join buy nothing groups, shop small and local businesses. But there are items that might need to be purchased new, or difficult to find second hand. There are items that might be a luxury and it's ok to want something for yourself or for someone you care about that's not a necessity.
At Eco Collective we very rarely have sales, we price our products to reflect the true cost of running our business. However, we do recognize that the products we sell have cheaper alternatives.
Take our deodorants for example; our deodorants cost $15, are handmade in Washington, compostable packaging, and made with fair trade and organic ingredients. But you can purchase deodorants that are $6 at your grocery store. The packaging may not be zero waste and mass produced by a conglomerate, but it's a more affordable option.
By participating in Black Friday/Small Business Saturday/Cyber Monday sales, we can discount our prices and gain a new customer while still maintaining a sustainable business operation. Individuals can vote with their dollar as Black Friday analytics give a significant pulse on our economy and where people are choosing to spend their money, or not spend it.
If you are planning on participating in Black Friday weekend sales, there are things you can do to prepare.
Make a list.
I have a running list of things I want or need but will wait to purchase during Black Friday sales. I set a budget and look at my list of the things I need and prioritize those items.
Know the original prices.
Make sure you're getting a deal! We do not appreciate when a brand ups their pricing of a product before the end of the year and then discounts the price to its original MSRP. It's a dirty and unethical marketing practice, so be aware of the original listed price.
If you know an item is available in multiple retailers, check the brands website but also retailers that also offer the same product. Different retailers will have different discounts so shop the best one.
This one is a note from Genevieve - “If you find yourself wanting to buy something on a whim or shop from fast fashion brands, take a pause and ask yourself why you want it. How does that ad or item make you feel? Powerful, sexy, feminine, athletic, cute, playful, traveled… Is there something already in your home or your closet that makes you feel that way? Go wear that piece or use that thing and see if you still want to make the purchase afterwards. It’s okay to make an exception every now and then but taking this “pause” can help a lot of impulse buys and buyer’s remorse so you can try to align your spending with your values wherever possible.”
Return policies can change if a product is discounted. Especially if you're purchasing a gift, understand the return policies as many brands will not accept returns on sales items or only offer store credit.
Check your email!
If you are signed up for promotional email marketing with a brand you like, open your emails for sneak peeks of their Black Friday Sales.
Sign up for SMS text marketing.
Many brands offer exclusive sales or early sales to customers who are signed up for SMS text marketing. It's a mutually beneficial form of marketing as brands are able to directly communicate their offerings with their customers and customers are able to hear about sales, new releases, and special offers before everyone else.
Eco Collective will be offering a special offer to customer who are signed up for our SMS text marketing so if you want to be notified.
Text HOLIDAYVIP to 8448601054 for our Black Friday special offer.