What is Black Friday?
Black Friday is one of the biggest retail shopping events of the year. It originated in the US and was successfully imported to the UK around 2010, when Amazon started offering Black Friday discounts to UK shoppers. In the last couple years, with retailers rolling out savings all over the UK from Asda to Argos, Tesco to Marks & Spencer, Black Friday has become a favourite occasion to kick off their Christmas shopping.
Though some might have us believe that the name is inspired by the popular retail phrase of being "in the black" (making a profit), the history is a lot more interesting than that! The first recorded use of the term is a market crash that happened in the US on Friday, September 24, 1869. The crash happened when two Wall Street financiers, Jay Gould and Jim Fisk, tried to manipulate the marketplace and drive up the price of gold. Almost a century later, police in the city of Philadelphia revived the term in an attempt to (unsuccessfully) dissuade the public from participating in the retail frenzy that always followed Thanksgiving. Over time, the phrase earned a positive spin that most of us are familiar with today, as the day when retailers can move their ledgers from "red" to "black" and turn a profit in the lead-up to Christmas.
When is Black Friday?
Black Friday 2016 is on November 25th this year. The date always falls on the day after American Thanksgiving. The retail "holiday" has grown from a one-day frenzy to a four-day (sometimes week-long) event with businesses opening earlier on Friday and even extending online deals into the wee hours of the morning. From Thursday night door-crashers, to weekend carry-overs, to Cyber Monday's online shop-a-thon, Black Friday has turned into a retail holiday that keeps on giving. We will be posting the latest Black Friday deals here in the lead-up and during the weekend itself from your favourite participating retailers.
What is Cyber Monday?
Cyber Monday is the Monday following American Thanksgiving weekend. Cyber Monday 2016 falls on November 28th. The day was coined by Ellen Davis of the National Retail Federation (NRF) in 2005, when she noted that this date held the record for the highest revenues for online sales. The event refers to an online-only shopping event offering discounts on electronics, home appliances, personal accessories, and apparel. Some retailers wait until Cyber Monday to announce their online deals, saving in-store deals for Black Friday, but with the popularity of online retail, both Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become online extravaganzas. There aren't really any hard and fast rules either, because these days, the event often extends past Monday to the whole week.