While it is traditional that many retailers release their Black Friday ads during late October and early November, we predict that the pandemic will force several retailers to pitch a different kind of holiday season to their shoppers. The rewards typically outweigh the risks when it comes to lining up extra early for doorbusters on Black Friday, but we predict that it is unlikely stores will be asking their customers to weigh a pandemic versus saving big on the hottest items of the year.
As such, it is very likely that this year will be filled with all kinds of online promotions taking place well outside of the traditional Black Friday timeline. Home Depot has already announced that they will be having an irregular Black Friday event by holding sales during all of November and December. How many other retailers will offer something similar? With several online shopping events on the horizon, we break down which stores we think will have the strongest selection of huge savings this year.
To see our predictions of when major retailer ads will release this year, check here!
Amazon Black Friday predictions
Amazon has found tremendous success during the pandemic, with an amazing surge in customers purchasing their groceries, supplies and distractions online. Amazon has always hosted fantastic online savings during the holiday season, and we predict this year will be even better. While traditionally hosting some of the largest savings on big tech items, we predict that Amazon’s focus this year will instead be on a wide array of smaller, more personal items. With so many people staying inside during the pandemic, we predict that Amazon will focus their attention on what needs those customers have rather than just marking down the hottest tech of the season.
It may be impossible to predict exactly what Amazon has in store for its customers this year, but we predict that it will play out similar in tone to what Home Depot offered. We predict that rather than having a giant sale event over the course of three days, that Amazon will instead hold regularly discounted items during November and December. Cyber Monday is always a huge event for Amazon as well, and we predict that it will be wrapped up into a possible holiday season event.
Best Buy Black Friday predictions
Similar to Amazon, Best Buy was quick to adapt to both online orders and curbside pickups. As a result, Best Buy has seen great sales numbers during the pandemic. We predict that Best Buy will still be able to move several more big tech items than Amazon, thanks in large part to the curbside pickup availability. Additionally, we predict that Best Buy will be a bit more aggressive with their sales towards the two new game consoles launching in November: the Xbox Series and the PlayStation 5. In 2013, when the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 released, Best Buy offered several different promotions for the new video games rather than the consoles themselves. We predict that this year will be similar, with possible gift card promotions when purchasing various gaming titles or even bundle packages of various games for additional savings.
Best Buy traditionally offers a variety of savings plans for Samsung phones and iPhones, so we predict that this year will be no different. The Note 20 Ultra just released last month and Apple announced the newest iPads recently. We predict there will be a small amount of discounts and new line promotions for these devices, but how Best Buy handles these kinds of sales during a pandemic will be key.
Walmart Black Friday predictions
Currently, most Walmart’s are counting heads at the door and only allowing a certain number of customers inside at one time. Many Walmarts with two main entrances have seen one of their entrances temporarily closed to help funnel and count customers. As a result, we predict that Walmart will venture down a similar path to Home Depot. Walmart also offers curbside pickup, but due to the nature of their store (they sell perishables in addition to many other types of items) we predict that they will have a harder time arranging sales this way. Walmart has always been one of the largest stores on Black Friday, so we predict that they will do their best to have regular sales during the holiday season to keep up with high demand and limited traffic.
We’re certain that smart shoppers will still want to pay attention to sales on 4K televisions and cellphone deals at Walmart. Although it may feel a bit more complicated to ship the products to your home, smart shoppers will be quite relieved that they won’t have to stand in insanely long lines this year.
Target Black Friday predictions
Target is in a similar situation to Walmart. They were slower than Best Buy and some restaurants at setting up a curbside pickup option for their customers, and Target has always been a tad slower in shipping speeds compared to Amazon and Best Buy. Target also sells perishables, which we believe will complicate matters when it comes to organizing curbside pickups once the holiday shopping season kicks in to full effect. As a result, we predict that Target will have to run regular sales during the holidays in order to help compete with retailers like Amazon and Best Buy.
Target is traditionally home to huge savings on a variety of electronics. They offer similar deals to Walmart on new cellphone line promotions, so if you’ve got your sights on a new phone this year, make sure to follow their promotions closely.
Hottest 2020 Black Friday products
Without question, the hottest Black Friday product this year will be video gaming consoles. With so many people stuck inside during the pandemic, video games have proven over the last six months that people strongly desire ways spend hours at a time taking their mind off of the pandemic. The Nintendo Switch was in such demand in April that the secondary market was moving used Switch consoles at more than double their retail price.
Combined with the drive for escapism is the release of the new gaming consoles in November. The Xbox Series and the PlayStation 5 represent the first new, next-gen. console release since 2013 and we’re certain that these systems will be very high on most peoples’ shopping lists. The only question that remains is whether or not retailers will have them in stock.
Important ad leak dates
We predict that Harbor Freight, even in a pandemic, will be the first retailer to drop their Black Friday ad. It may not be a traditional ad that advertises what we’ve come to know as Black Friday, but whatever it ends up being, we predict that Harbor Freight will be first. We expect it to arrive as early as late September.
Thanksgiving online sales start-time predictions
Home Depot has already announced that their sales events will be both in store and online, and will take place all of November and December. As such, we predict that several of the major retailers will start their online sales by November – if not earlier. It is possible, however, that the largest savings of the Black Friday season will still take place over Black Friday weekend.
2020 Black Friday winner
It seems like a given that either Amazon or Best Buy will have the best Black Friday deals this year, hands down. They’ve had six months to perfect their online deliveries and to dominate a whole new market of work-from-home customers who need supplies and non-essential items. Both of these retailers seem to be a lock for revamping things this holiday season.