Coined in the early 1950's to describe employees extending their weekends by calling in sick the Friday after Thanksgiving, “Black Friday” has become synonymous with huge retail savings, serving as the official kickoff each holiday shopping season. While savings on popular items like electronics, furniture, appliances, clothes, and home goods usually garner the most attention with bundled-up, caffeinated shoppers camping on sidewalks outside stores, there are also plenty of deals to be had on not-so-glamorous products like tires, motor oil, and electronic accessories.
In this article, we'll discuss the overall Black Friday landscape, give you some tips for locating meaningful deals for your vehicle, and highlight some ways savvy shoppers can score automotive savings that may otherwise fly under the radar of the loudest Black Friday hype.
BLACK FRIDAY - 2021: WHAT TO EXPECT
Although the pandemic has been winding to a close for most of 2021, supply chain issues have plagued companies big and small with shipment delays, staffing shortages, social distancing constraints, and backlogged orders throughout the year. We still expect companies to go hard on their Black Friday promotions, but shoppers should mentally prepare themselves for similar delays, backorders, and shortages. If 2020 is any indication, the holiday shopping demand will be stronger than ever while product may be in short supply.
A 2020 insights report from Adobe Analytics showed retailers experienced a 21% increase in consumer online spending, making it the second-largest online spending day in US history. This fact, especially during a year with record unemployment and pent-up consumer demand, could mean more of the same in 2021. Expect retailers across the board to push their promotions online and look for them to begin popping up as early as late October. If you know the make and model of tire you want to put on your car, for example, visit the manufacturer's website often as they sometimes post the best deals.
WHEN AND WHERE TO FIND DEALS FOR YOUR VEHICLE
You'd be hard pressed to find a better time of year than Black Friday to buy things like tires, accessories, or service packages for your vehicle. Automotive retailers across the board find themselves in a difficult position each holiday season. Black Friday hype is focused on flashy flat screens and the latest video game console for a reason… they entertain us and we can’t wait to spend our money on them. No one is excited to spend hundreds of dollars on tires. So, as the year comes to an end and automotive retailers look to hit their tire numbers, consumers will see the biggest savings of the year on complete tire sets as stores drive to put as many tires on cars as they can. It's not uncommon to find 50% savings on a set of four new tires, so set those savings expectations high.
Given the shortages, delays, and elevated consumer demand throughout 2021, we’re likely to see businesses roll out their Black Friday promotions earlier and extend them for longer in an attempt to capture as much market share as possible. Don’t be fooled into thinking the best deals will only be found on Friday, November 26. Start your search early and do check in often if you want to experience the biggest savings.
THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX: SERVICE PACKAGES & ACCESSORIES
Traditionally, Black Friday provides the deepest discounts on electronics and other home goods. This means accessories for your vehicle like voice assistants, radar detectors, car wash kits, infotainment systems, and handsfree headsets will all be on sale. If you sacrificed on vehicle amenities like seat warmers, massagers, or heads up displays when you purchased your vehicle, Black Friday deals let you add those luxury features at a fraction of the cost, so think big.
Automotive service centers will also have deals on oil changes or extended service packages, often as an upsell for customers coming in to buy tires. Smart repair shop owners see the opportunity new customers enticed by stellar tire deals bring in the form of possible repeat business. Many will offer additional items like oil change packages or free alignment to showcase their level of service and professionalism, building loyalty among their new customers.