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Which? reveals that 98% of Black Friday ‘deals’ aren’t the cheapest price of the year

Consumer group Which? share why it might be better to buy your wishlist items on another day of the year

Lydia Patrick
Thursday 23 November 2023 14:44 GMT
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Black Friday’s deals aren’t always as good as they first appear, researchers say
Black Friday’s deals aren’t always as good as they first appear, researchers say ( SWNS)

As Black Friday shoppers hope to bag themselves a bargain in time for Christmas, Which? Reveals the ‘slashed prices’ are not always as good as they seem.

The consumer rights advocates says that just 2 per cent of products in 2022 Black Friday sales were cheaper than when they were on sale at other times of the year.

Which? Tracked 208 products from last year’s sale across popular brands including Amazon. AO, Argos, Boots, John Lewis, Richer Sounds and Very. They found 98 per cent of products were the same price or less at other times of year whilst 45 per cent were cheaper at other times of the year.

They also tracked sales from 19 November until 2 December as ‘deals’ begin before and continue after Black Friday, but results were similarly disappointing.

They found that 86 per cent of products were the same price or cheaper outside of the sales period. The Black Friday sale takes place between 24-27 November.

Which?’s worst deals from last year

Apple Airpods (2nd Generation)

The popular earphones were on offer for £119, slashed from the original price of £139 at Argos and Currys.

However, they retailed at a cheaper price of £99-£109 every day between 25 May and 9 September.

The price raised to £139 just two months before the ‘slash’ to £119 on Black Friday, Which? revealed.

The latest Apple earphones (The Independent)

Garmin Lily Sport Edition

The sports smartwatch designed for women was on sale for £149 on Amazon last Black Friday but was sold for less at £114.99 58 days before on Amazon Prime Day.

Bowers & Wilkins 603 S2 Anniversary Edition (Black)

The speaker was £1,249 on 8 December but its Black Friday special cut-price was £50 more, costing £1,299 on Black Friday at Richer Sounds. The device was even cheaper for 23 days during May and June, setting consumers back £1,199.

Toshiba 50-inch 50UK3C63DB TV

Which? says buyers were better off waiting until the January sales to bag up this TV for a discounted cost of £279 as it cost £10 more on Black Friday, although discounted from an original price of £399.

Bose 700 wireless noise-cancelling over-ear headphones

The £349 headphones were slashed to £279 at AO on Black Friday but cost less in December at £249, researchers said.

According to their research, Argos and Amazon were the worst contenders for Black Friday deals, with cheaper prices at other times of the year.

Amazon responded to Which? by saying they aim to offer great value throughout the year by special seasonal deals and price-matching however they also revealed to the retail watchdog tha the independent analyst Profitero reviewed over 11,000 products in 2022 and found that Amazon’s year-round prices are on average 13% lower than other online retailers in the UK.

Argos told Which? only one product in their analysis was a Black Friday promotional offer but the consumer charity dispute this since the offers were included in a Black Friday section and in their online URLs.

Boots performed slightly better as just 21 per cent of their deals were cheaper outside of Black Friday.

When Which? reached out to Boots they said: “Of the small number of deals reviewed by Which? these were only lower prices during a promotional period – namely our January sale, when we often offer big discounts on clearance items. We also offer a price match promise on our range of electrical beauty products.”

Which? said the best products to snatch up on Black Friday are fridge freezers, tablets and smart TV boxes as none of these items were cheaper six months before or after the sales.

Music fans are better off purchasing headphones and earphones when they are on other offers throughout the year as 83 per cent were cheaper six months either side of the holiday, the consumer champion added.

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