Black Friday Idea's

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    Hery Gang,

    Could you do me a favor and post some of the best idea’s or sales you have seen in the past with regards to BLACK FRIDAY promotions.

    I’m looking for sales generators like but not limited to:

    – Free delivery?
    – Free install(s)?
    – gift with purchase?

    let me know…


    I have always found that Black Friday is not a great day for appliance sales. There are always great rebates and low prices but people are not looking for appliances at this time. As a whole the appliance industry should try to have a different day/time for appliance sales at a time when people want to buy appliances. The few weeks leading up to Thanksgiving is always a very busy time and that is when we all shold be getting people used to buying appliances. As far as a great idea for Black Friday, why not sleep i and treat your whole sales force to a nice breakfast, becausae lets face it all of the shoppers are at Wal Mart trying to get a laptop for $25.00.



    Thirty years ago, when department stores still had appliances, Black Friday was a good day. Fair deals and the idea was to bring in shoppers at the early hours of 7 or 8 AM. After they made the purchase of of Washer Dryer set, or the VCR or TV, they stayed in the store for a bit and picked up the sweaters, holiday dresses, perfume or whatnot. Those areas were profitable. The Black Friday deal was to get them in the store.

    Now days, we are mostly stand alone stores without the soft lines that make profit to a greater degree. The big box folks are killing each other to get volumn and low margins. And, they waste manhours on staffs that feel the burn out early on in the season of long hours. It makes sense if you sell Televison and personal electronics, such as laptops and other gift items. Appliances and furniture are not so much the gift items they were in the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s. Just why are we all killing ourselves for this non profitable sales volumn?

    Many independents will open early, but not at the silly hours of 4 AM and such. They learned how now days the customer has adapted to shopping early and getting home before noon to have that leftover Turkey sandwich and watch football and parade reruns in the afternoon. Keeping a store open for appliances and furniture much past 6 PM on Black Friday is really a waste of man hours. Many independents have learned to lure the customers into the store after they have sat in line for the notebook computer and loss leader TV and those customes will not have to get up early and wait in a line (possibly in inclement weather depending where you live). Those customers are older and looking for replacement appliances, perhaps at a sale price. They are not generally looking to get up so darn early to get the rediculous deals. Stores that opened reguar hours, seemed to do as well in volumn as those opening before the Sun rose in the East.

    I have noticed the sales volumn drop on the door buster and Black Friday deals in the last two years. Last Christmas, many of the deal items were still sitting in the warehouses the day before Christmas.

    Promote before the Holiday season gets going in late October and early November.


    I have a novel idea for Black Friday, which we instituted last year to resounding success, particularly with my employees:WE CLOSED ON FRIDAY, REOPENED ON SATURDAY
    Before anyone calls me crazy, just think about these advantages:You don’t have to deal with selling product 5% over cost (and in my area, delivering and installing it for free).
    By closing you can take the "high road" and say to customers that you gave your employees the day off (reminding them that they themselves were off that day) and in that way you avoid any embarassment or loss of face if you refuse to match other competitors crazy Black Friday pricing. In the end, what have you really lost? Selling a bunch of product for absolutely no profit. Who needs that? On the other hand, everyone welcomes the extra day off. All the crazies are mainly out on Friday and by Saturday, more "normal" (as in, pofitable) customers are shopping. Try it, you will be happy you did!!


    I don’t understand this mentality, closing on one of the largest retail holidays of the year. Why not hang a sign with directions to your competitors location while you are at it? Where will those consumers go the next time they need a product? Probably not to see you. You are not admitting defeat, just not playing, right?
    Here is some advice for dealing with Black Friday. Take it for what it’s worth.

    • Your competition starts planning for Black Friday early. Like in May & June. You might want to as well. This will help your profitability. It is on the calendar every year, plan for it!
    • While profits on Black Friday will probably be reduced, it does not have to be unprofitable. Judge your profits on the month of November, not one day.
    • Work with your vendors. Find out what their Black Friday promotion is. Develop a plan.
    • Work with your vendors on additional product outside of their Black Friday promotions. Chances are they have discontinued product or other specials they want to move.
    • You probably have product in your own warehouse you need to liquidate. Do it on Black Friday.
    • Develop a list of products / deals that you cannot be beat on. Advertise them.
    • Sell Extended Warranties / Add ons. Run a contest for your staff. Give a prize to the associate who sells the most ad ons
    • Execute your plan. Take every deal you can on Black Friday.

    Love the Breakfast idea…


    Our business is not focused on, nor has it ever been, on promotional products. We rarely advertise and our main effort is towards higher end products that don’t lend themselves well to Black Friday. So we will lose little by not being open that day. For what we will lose in sales on Friday, I will gain in goodwill from my employess because of the extra day off. Ultimately, my employees’ satisfaction is more important to me than an extra day’s non-profitable business anyway.


    I’m sure your customers will appreciate your attitude almost as much as your employees do. I realize that, due to the economy, the industry has become even more competitive since I retired, but it’s nice to hear that some managers have "stayed the course" with a consistent strategy. Hopefully, when the economy fully recovers and expanding competitors are trying to steal employees, your people will remember who stood by them when times were tough.


    Just curious how everyone else did this black friday. Our sales were spectacular! Very little of the 249 dishwsaher or 349 washer or 449 range sold. We were HUGE on complete GE Slate and GE Profile kitchen packages, Kitchenaid packages were ok, Bosch was strong. It was a very profitable event for us, mainly because our buying group (NECO / ADC) kept us competitive to the big box, and on GE and GE Profile, the big box stores were not even able to come near our pricing. Kitchenaid was a fight to stay competitive, but still profitable. And on Bosch, no one came close to touching our prices.

    In terms of numbers…last year black friday for us was equal to a busy Saturday worth of sales. This year was four times last years BF sales. Saturday and Monday were equally as strong for us.

    What did the rest of you see?

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