TARGET 8: How much are you really saving on Black Friday?
COLUMBIA - If you plan on leaving your turkey dinner early to claim your spot in line for the Black Friday sales, you might want to think about how much you'll really save.
A recent study by NerdWallet found that 77 percent of Americans said they shop on Black Friday, yet the numbers show this might not be the best day of the year for deals. That's because the growing hype of Black Friday and the marketing tactics used by retailers are causing consumers to often think they are getting a better deal than they actually are.
Another study done by Savings.com found November 1 is a better day to buy electronics, November 26 is the best day for toys, and December 1 has the cheapest apparel.
The study also found 93 percent of retailers are repeating Black Friday products and prices from year to year. For example, a laptop with a year old system is going for the same price it went for brand new.
Another trick that gets customers lining up outside the door year-to-year is in the ads. For example, Kohl's Black Friday ad shows Beats by Dre headphones going for $179.99 on Black Friday, adding that the original price was $199.99. While this may be true, the headphones were being sold for $169.99 just two weeks before Thanksgiving.
A 14' trampoline and a 29" steel fire pit are labeled "special buy" in Walmart's Black Friday ad, but they are marked as the same price that they have been in stores for weeks leading up to Black Friday.
Because of examples like this, experts suggest shopping with a purpose and being informed.
"Do your research," Associate Professor of Strategic Communications Cynthia Frisby said. "There's low involvement shoppers and high involvement shoppers and a lot of times when it comes to these kind of sales or advertising schemes, it all depends on where that shopper is."
While shopping with a purpose may be the best way to save, some people wait all night just for the experience.
"I always love Black Friday and planning out your attack to which store to go to first," Columbia resident Sandy Hall said.
Some think the Black Friday craze will eventually die out, but Frisby said it's more likely to change than fade away.
"I do think it is like anything else, trends and fads or what have you. The Super Bowl hasn't died down. It's just being re-branded. So now you might see lets say three or five years from now, ads that talk about that fun you have with your girlfriends on Black Friday and not about the sales," Frisby said.
KOMU 8 compared prices on the shelves in Best Buy, Target, Kohl's, and Walmart in Columbia to prices in the Black Friday ads.
The majority of the deals KOMU 8 calculated a week before Thanksgiving were around a 20 percent below the Black Friday discount.
KOMU 8 noticed Best Buy's ad states in the small print "GE, Bosch, Whirlpool, KitchenAid, and Amana brand appliances are limited to 10 percent off" and that seemed to stand true with the other stores as well.
KOMU 8 also found items that are advertised as a certain percent off are better deals than the items that just show a reduced price.
Walmart and Target have some items that come with a gift card, which can be an added benefit not easily calculated into price change calculations.
Here are some of the randomly chosen items KOMU 8 calculated and what percentage less they will be this Black Friday compared to the week before:
Zombie Strike Nerf Gun - 33% less
Beats by Dre headphones - 17% less
HP Envy Wireless Printer - 50% less
Philips Sonicare Electric Toothbrush - 0% less
Disney Frozen Bicycle - 25% less
Sunbeam 900-Watt Microwave - 39% less
9" RCA Portable DVD player - 21% less
Holmes Infrared Heater - 50% less
Franklin Dual Court Rebound Pro Basketball - 30% less
14' trampoline - 28% less
50" Samsung Smart TV - 29% less
Stanley Rolling Tool Chest - 20% less
Stainless Steel Crock Pot - 68% less
Baby Trend Nursery Center - 24% less
Bissel Pet Advanced Pro Heat - 32% less
Brother Project Runway Sewing Machine - 15% less
Beats by Dre Pill 2.0 Speaker - 50% less
4GB X BOX 360 Consule - 19% less
Ninja Master Prep Blender - 34% less
Ninja Kitchen System with extra jar - 30% less
Remington Lithium all-in-one grooming kit - 26% less
Sonicare Essence Electric Toothbrush - 20% less
Black and Decker Jr. Play Workshop - 38% less
Levi's 501 Original - 43% less
GPX DVD Player - 24%
Insignia 40" Class LED 1080p HDTV - 36% less
Sony 32" Class LED 720p HDTV - 14% less
Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 - 17% less
Plantronics M95 Bluetooth Headset - 51% less
Samsung Gear Fit Fitness Watch - 33% less
Life Proof iPhone 5 case - 28% less
Escort - Passport Radar Detector - 40 % less