Fashion

Black Ops Friday: How to Snipe the Best Deals

Black Friday: an annual military operation for shopaholics everywhere. And never before has it been quite so explosive as this year with record sales reported across the UK and the US.

Barclaycard, who process roughly a third of every pound spent in the UK, described the originally American consumer holiday as “outstanding” compared to 2018, with transaction value statistics seeing an increase of 16.5%. Furthermore, the volume of transactions jumped by 7.2%.

“If you woke up in a mound of clothes and hangers, distraught after losing a tug of war”

This data confirms that Black Friday remains one of the largest spending days for us Brits since retail giant Amazon introduced the concept in 2010. Now more and more retailers are holding sales events on our side of the pond to mark the occasion – but with all this growth, is it becoming harder to scope out the best bargains?

This November 29th, if you found yourself ambushed in shopping aisles or ransacked at the clothing rails, or – in an extreme case – if you woke up in a mound of clothes and hangers, distraught after losing a tug of war for an LSIS (Last Size In Stock – yes, I’m coining this term), then read on for my top tips on how to boss Mission Black Friday in future.

“no collateral credit card damage through impulse buys, and no body hits whatsoever”

My personal recommendation is to move with the times and attack Black Friday on the World Wide Web. Now, if you are going to use this strategy then planning ahead is crucial: Checkpoint one is to have all of your favourite high-street brands’ apps downloaded onto your phone and respective accounts created by mid-September.

This enables you to make full advantage of the Wishlist app features in the run up to the day of attack. Every morning or evening without fail you will need to scroll through those New In sections, eyes peeled, and the second you see something you like, you add it to the Wishlist.

Then comes Checkpoint two, the maintenance: each week, get your Wishlist in order. Remove items you have begun to doubt, double check size guides, and get your Wishlist organised by priority or by category. If your graduation is on the horizon, then your graduation outfit must be locked and loaded by mid-November at the latest for any chance of securing a money-saving victory.

“don’t forget to map out your attack route so you know what sales to hit and when”

If you’re aiming to save on Christmas gifts, then get them in position, too. ASOS soldiers can use their new Boards feature for maximum military organisation. Bottom line, keep your Wishlists clean, then when D-Day comes, you will be able to launch your raid the second the sales are in scope. You get in there, make the transfers from Wishlist to Basket, and get out in a matter of minutes with an off-the-charts bargain count, no collateral credit card damage through impulse buys, and no body hits whatsoever. High risk, as online shopping always is, but potentially a very high reward operation.

“It is imperative to wear a light, comfortable and quick to change uniform, preferably including something with pockets like cargo jeans”

Striking through your phone screen is therefore my suggestion, but there are of course many advantages to braving the Black Friday battlefield as a foot soldier, mostly the opportunity to see how the products look and feel in person, as well as to try them on.

“Be confident, calm and collected, and keep your core engaged – those line-cutters and rail-rummagers won’t know what’s hit ‘em, comrade”

In this light, I have also compiled some tips for the brave shoppers out there. Firstly, don’t go in blind – do your research in advance. Follow Checkpoints one and two above in order to have a better idea of what you will have in your crosshairs to reduce on-the-day deliberation, and don’t forget to map out your attack route so you know what sales to hit and when.

Secondly, travel light. If you are weighed down before you even start buying then you are likely to collapse under the pressure later, so only take battle essentials like your purse/wallet, keys, water for hydration (a hands-free hydration device is ideal for maximum manoeuvrability) and don’t forget to BYOB – bring your own bags – including a rucksack to distribute weight evenly and keep you nimble.

“Find a hidden spot in the shop to stash these items away to prevent being clothing rack-jacked”

Thirdly, consider your changing room tactics. It is imperative to wear a light, comfortable and quick to change uniform, preferably including something with pockets like cargo jeans. Even if you are targeting half-price heels on the day, it is inadvisable to wear them. A broken heel or twisted ankle could lead to the mission being aborted.

You also need to be mentally prepared for the consumer chaos. Be confident, calm and collected, and keep your core engaged – those line-cutters and rail-rummagers won’t know what’s hit ‘em, comrade.

Lastly, learn to safeguard. Ever been unsure about an item but don’t want it to be swiped up while you consider? Find a hidden spot in the shop to stash these items away to prevent being clothing rack-jacked. If you can form a battalion to brave this mission with, then that could be beneficial too – just remember to leave no man behind.

So, these are my top tips for surviving Black Friday and getting the most out of those sales. In short, stay prepared, poised and patient. Some can’t hack the pressure, of course, but with these tips hopefully you will be a Black Friday 2020 victor and not a victim. Stay sharp out there kids.

Rachel West

Featured Image Courtesy of writer Rachel West 

Main Image courtesy of topshop, asos, nastygal, pullandbear

and bershkacollection via Instagram 

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