What you need to know about Black Friday

26 November 2021, 14:19 | Updated: 26 November 2021, 14:42

LBC’s Dean Dunham writes about Black Friday
LBC’s Dean Dunham writes about Black Friday. Picture: LBC/Alamy
Dean Dunham

By Dean Dunham

It's Black Friday today, the official date in the calendar, followed by Cyber Monday, when retailers roll out what they claim to be their best bargains of the year.

But can you really get a great bargain during this sale period? The answer is of course you can but not every deal you see during this period is unique to Black Friday or Cyber Monday.

Studies over the past few years have shown that often goods promoted during Black Friday have either been sold cheaper earlier in the year or are later advertised at a lower price.

The whole event is really one big marketing stunt, designed to reel in and hook consumers into making impulse purchases, in the belief they need to ‘buy now’ or miss a great deal.

Retail is a very competitive space, and the age of the internet has opened up multiple buying options for consumers and has created a market where ‘shopping around’ is very straightforward and simple.

The reality is. you can get a ‘deal’ at any time of the year so do not need to be lured in by sale events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Every year I see two common themes following this period - a misconception about your consumer rights and scams going through the roof. With this in mind, here are two important things you need to know:

1. You still have rights

When you buy goods from a trader the Consumer Rights Act says they must be of satisfactory quality, as described and fit for purpose.

When you buy the goods online, the Consumer Contract Regulations affords you the right to change your mind and demand a full refund within 14 days of delivery.

Every year I hear stories of traders telling consumers that not all of these rights apply when you buy goods in a sale event like Black Friday. It is simply not true.

To be clear, the only time your consumer rights are reduced are i) if you buy from a private seller the law says the goods only have to be ‘as described’ and safe ii) if a trader points out a defect in goods at the point of purchase you do not have the right to reject due to this later and iii) if you buy bespoke goods you do not have the right to change your mind under the Consumer Contract Regulations.

2. Fraudsters are on the prowl

Fraudsters love Black Friday and Cyber Monday as they know consumers in their droves take to the internet to snap up a deal. Make sure the deal you snap up this year is a genuine one.