Why Do We Not Celebrate Black Friday?
On Black Friday, stores throw discounts around like there’s no tomorrow. And quite often, these discounts do more harm to retailers and consumers than good and damage the environment. We’ll explain this thoroughly in this article. Swiss Made Direct, as a consumer and climate-oriented business, is always against manipulations of any kind, and that’s why we do not celebrate Black Friday.
Resistance to the increasingly established Black Friday is growing from year to year. A good example is Sweden’s “White Monday,” where people set a sign against overconsumption.
The bargain days definitely have a dark side; we want to reveal it for you in five points.
You don’t actually save that much (or nothing at all)
Dizzying discounts tempt many consumers to make an ill-considered purchase. The percentages are often merely artificially inflated, with retailers referring to a manufacturer’s suggested retail price.
Because the lower prices tempt many people to make impulse purchases, they end up saving nothing. Most of the time, the opposite is true. Those who spend money unplanned on things they don’t need don’t save any money.
It’s a kind of manipulation
On Black Friday, participating companies’ marketing departments deliberately stir fear. The fear of missing out – “FOMO” in English, means that it entices consumers to buy something because it might not be available soon (or at least not at such a low price).
Specifically, they use this trick with notices such as “only 5 left” or “10 people are looking at this offer right now.” Another measure from the sales psychology bag of tricks is luminous colors or the deliberate placement of a bargain next to expensive products.
The enemy of the environment
The way our society consumes today is a major driver of climate change. Greenpeace calls Black Friday a “black day for the environment” for a good reason.
After all, if everything that is broken is bought new instead of being repaired on these bargain days, the climate is further fuelled as a result. Instead of an environmentally friendly circular economy, Black Friday continues to fuel the problematic linear economy.
Buying clothes and electronics, in particular, harms our environment – because of the long transport routes or because manufacturing processes and required raw materials are not sustainable. In addition, the fact that people order online on Black Friday and return in large numbers causes further emissions.
For the sake of the people
The run-up to Christmas means pure stress for many retail employees:
- Longer working days.
- Stores that are also open on Sundays.
- Even more customers than usual to serve and advise.
This affects not only sales assistants but also logisticians and couriers.
In addition, low prices often go together with unfair working conditions in the country of manufacture. Child labor, low wages, and poor social benefits make it possible for retailers to offer Black Friday deals in the first place.
Because smaller companies suffer
Consumers, employees, stores, and online stores are under enormous pressure during the bargain days and weeks in November. Therefore, it is vital for them to remain competitive, especially in the sales-relevant months of November and December.
When all the big retailers offer rock-bottom prices, small and medium-sized businesses must follow suit to get their goods to customers. And this is even though it is often not financially worthwhile for them because they cannot procure the goods at the same conditions, according to the Swiss Retail Federation. In contrast to smaller and medium-sized retailers, retail giants can negotiate special conditions with their suppliers in the run-up to Black Friday and thus often get their goods at heavily discounted prices.
We hopefully made it very clear why we do not celebrate Black Friday. Our customers and environment are always our number one priority. And it will always be that way.