The Thanksgiving holiday is normally a time for comfort with the family but Black Friday has quickly become more of a black hole, sucking in everyone's gratitude and spitting out corporate greed.
Like the arrival of Santa's sleigh on Christmas Eve, each year retailers deliver a host of deals, discounts and freebies for shoppers as part of a highly anticipated shopping event called Black Friday, which falls on the day after Thanksgiving. 2017 will be no exception.
Even if you just have to get a hold of some of the great deals to jump-start shopping for the holidays, there are plenty of comparable opportunities to get the deals that Black Friday offers.
All the big retailers will be getting in on the act, but expect massive discounts from the biggest players including Amazon, Currys, John Lewis, Argos, Tesco and Very to name but a few. There is no reason to stand in line out in the cold and risk life and limb to get a hold of the last $500 TV - the same deal is probably available somewhere online. And this year, many retailers are joining in by modifying their Thanksgiving and Black Friday hours. Customers made a staggering 18 transactions a second at peak times during the day and 75 per cent of all visits were from mobile and tablet devices.
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Past year savvy shoppers were ready to snap up bargains as soon as deals went live at midnight - with half a million visits to Argos's digital channels between midnight and 1am, equating to 8,000 visits per minute.
Argos is a leading United Kingdom digital retailer selling more than 60,000 products through its website, mobile channels, 850+ stores and over the telephone. On Black Friday itself, they will be joined by hundreds of head office workers helping out on the shop floor. But don't let all the Black Friday hype fool you.
Even though e-commerce has had a significant effect on brick-and-mortar businesses over the past 20 years, a new national poll shows online shopping has yet to overtake in-store purchases in terms of popularity, especially during the holiday season.
Thanksgiving/Black Friday hours: Stores open from 5 p.m. Thanksgiving Day through 11 p.m.
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