Black Friday is going to be weird this year !!!

Challenges always present an opportunity for innovation, and we’ve seen plenty of them since COVID-19 hit. And while Black Friday has certainly changed a lot over the years, it’s going to look extra different this November as we try to navigate a world where it’s not safe to crowd a bunch of people into an enclosed store.



Black Friday is officially on Nov. 27 (it's always the day after Thanksgiving), but there's still a lot that's up in the air. Namely? Whether or not people will even be allowed to shop in person.

While we still don't know a lot for sure, we have a slew of predictions for what this and future Black Fridays could look like. Hunting for deals via AR? Personal shoppers? The triumphant return of QR codes? We've reviewed our notes from years past with an eye on the future to come up with this list of possibilities — let's see how many we get right.

Say goodbye to in-store shopping

Black Friday is going to be weird this year — and that’s a good thing


Some stores (like Target, Kohl's, and Walmart) have already decided to keep their doors closed on Thanksgiving, so it’s hard to imagine in-store shopping as we know it getting the green light on Black Friday. Don’t bank on getting to go into brick and mortar stores and browse deals — we’re predicting they’ll all be closed and online shopping will reign supreme.

Curbside pickup is here to stay

Black Friday is going to be weird this year — and that’s a good thing


One of the biggest shopping changes to come about during the COVID-19 pandemic is the surge of curbside pickup options. Black Friday will be no different. Gone are the days when having someone deliver a bag of goodies to your car was just reserved for your Friday night trips to Chili's. Taking advantage of curbside pickup will also let you get your loot the same day instead of having to wait for it to be shipped to your house.

Get ready to hit that refresh button

Black Friday is going to be weird this year — and that’s a good thing

Because there will be such an influx of traffic for retailers’ online shops, you can fully expect to run into technical issues. Be prepared for sites to be slower or just crash altogether because of higher traffic.

We’ll also likely see challenges with items remaining in stock. This is something we already experience in normal years, but with an online-only Black Friday, you’ll have to do that fighting over the last item on the shelf virtually. It’ll be like you’re really at the store! But for real, plan ahead and make a list of the big ticket items you want and be quick to add them to your cart and check out to make sure they don’t go out of stock before you can buy them.

The deals may actually be better this year

Black Friday is going to be weird this year — and that’s a good thing


The year 2020 sucks and we all know it. We anticipate that retailers will try to make up for it by running extra/better deals and "doorbusters," especially since we won’t get to shop in-store sales. As such, we’re not expecting to see any “in-store only” deals, which means all of those typical doorbusters will be available online to encourage people to shop safely from their homes.

An online Black Friday is sounding better and better — you get bonus deals and you don’t even have to leave your couch after your post-turkey day food coma.

Black Friday won’t be limited to just a weekend

Black Friday is going to be weird this year — and that’s a good thing


Black Friday has already become a month-long event, so we’re expecting it to feel even longer this year. Get your wallet ready in October (Prime Day is also rumored to start this month) because there will most definitely be some early Black Friday deals. Online shopping has no physical limitations, so retailers will probably have a heyday with running deals.

Keep an eye out for QR codes

Black Friday is going to be weird this year — and that’s a good thing

As holiday season approaches, your mailbox starts getting flooded with ad scans for all the upcoming deals. The Black Fridays of the future will probably turn toward tech to make this a more immersive experience. We wouldn’t be surprised to see AR ad circulars where you can scan QR codes and see special deals and product information on your phone.

For example, say you are a dedicated magazine reader — you could see special QR codes within the pages that take you to the products advertised at a retailer like Amazon, Best Buy, or Walmart. We’re guessing that readers will have access to special Black Friday deals that they can scan from print publications (or social feeds) as the shopping holiday turns more virtual.


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