In case you didn’t know, Black Friday is an online (or physical in some countries) and biggest sale promo of the year globally. Its that one time where products or services have unbelievable discounts – for instance you find that a product you could have bought at 50,000 UGX is being priced at 15,000 UGX (this what some call abnormal discounts). These exclusive deals and discounts can go up to 70 or 80% across all product categories ranging from electronics, appliances, fashion, home and so forth.
Black Friday has been regarded as the beginning of the Christmas shopping season and its also a shopping day for a combination of reasons. As the first day after the last major holiday before Christmas, it marks the unofficial beginning of the Christmas shopping season.
During this season, online shopping or eCommerce firms partner with some of biggest or well known brands to make it a success. Normally you find them partnering with smartphone dealers, fashionistas, tech firms, to mention a few – which draws more attention from the customers
Thus, with this global promo, this is where you ought to find what you always desired that you couldn’t afford. Say, you wanted to have Apple’s tenth anniversary phablet; the iPhone 8 or 8+ or even the iPhone X, or you also probably wanted hands on the Samsung Galaxy S8 or Note 8 – this is probably for the tech or smartphone enthusiast, same thing goes to fashion, accessories, art, photography, house holdings and so on. This would be the best time.
Notably, unlike other countries where Black Friday has been adapted by supermarkets, this is a rare case in Uganda. In Uganda, the promo only occurs to eCommerce firms; Jumia, Kilimall – who are some of the biggest competitors in the country. However, supermarkets also do have their moments but not like the Black Friday offer, if this was so – it would be a moment of truth, seeing who is stronger and who is not. In other words, it would bring/cause violence and chaos.
Despite frequent attempts to control the crowds of shoppers, minor injuries are common among the crowds, usually as a result of being pushed or thrown to the ground in small stampedes. While most injuries remain minor, serious injuries and even deliberate violence might happen.
A perfect example, in 2008, a crowd of approximately 2,000 shoppers in Valley Stream, New York, waited outside for the 5:00 am opening of the local Wal-Mart. As opening time approached, the crowd grew anxious and when the doors were opened the crowd pushed forward, breaking the door down, where a 34-year-old employee was trampled to death.
The shoppers did not appear concerned with the victim’s fate, expressing refusal to halt their stampede when other employees attempted to intervene and help the injured employee, complaining that they had been waiting in the cold and were not willing to wait any longer. Shoppers had begun assembling as early as 9:00 PM the evening before.
During the struggle, several other people incurred minor injuries, including a pregnant woman who had to be taken to the hospital. According to the National Retail Federation, the incident may be the first case of a death occurring during Black Friday sales.
I guess this becomes one of the reasons, we might not want to witness this.
Editor’s Tip: I advise all consumers to research/look for their favorite products in advance, and place them on their wish list/cart to prepare for the discounts. For convenience, you can receive your order at your home or office – or at the pickup station in downtown Kampala