By Jazlyn Espinal and Rachel Houng
In 2022, people in the US spent approximately $9.12 billion during Black Friday, which is a world record for the most money spent during the week of sales. The sales increased dramatically due to various reasons. For instance, the “buy now, pay later” method, allowing consumers to pay for purchases after buying them, was used 78% more during the week of Black Friday compared to the previous week.
Dating back to the 1950s, Black Friday originated from police in Philadelphia and Rochester describing the in-store crowds the day after Thanksgiving. As time progressed, the holiday has spread to other countries in the world, including Belgium, Australia and more. Currently, it is considered by many to be a consumerist holiday where companies utilize the occasion to promote the sale of their items. Oftentimes, stores strategically advertise with time-sensitive deal offers, discount coupons, social media promotions and email campaigns. With the prevalence of these advertising efforts, many consumers feel the need to take advantage of the seemingly large deals proposed by these stores on the holiday.
Artwork by Sabeena Ramdarie
During Black Friday, many consumers rush to both in-person and online stores to find the best deals, which are often advertised to attract them.
“Black Friday is exciting. I get to spend money and get more than usual because of all the deals,” sophomore Katelyn Vadakkan said.
“Black Friday every year is a time of saving. I don't spend much, but I like to see if there is anything I need for cheaper,” freshman Jisha Jinu said.
Some feel that the shift away from the pandemic has led to Black Friday’s increased popularity this year. Initially, during the COVID-19 pandemic, the holiday’s sales dropped, with online sales declining by 30% and in-person sales by 50%, according to The Wall Street Journal. Even after many returned to their daily lives in 2021, Black Friday sales generated $8.9 billion. This amount then climbed to $9.12 billion in 2022.
Many speculate that the return to everyday life has encouraged people to purchase more items.
“I think [Black Friday sales increased] because COVID has dialed down, which caused a bunch of people to purchase more things this year rather than last year, and I look forward to the deals,” sophomore Aylin Hernandez said.
This year, many people saved money by purchasing both common and gift items during Black Friday sales. The most purchased items were electronics, including the Nintendo Switch, AirPods, Kasa Smart Plug, Revlon One-Step Volumizer Plus 2.0 and iRobot Roomba.
Overall, Black Friday sales set a record in 2022. By next year, some predict that sales will rise if online shopping and technology continue to increase.