A shopping event that has evolved significantly over time, Black Friday has become an iconic date for consumers around the world. In this first part, we will explore the history behind Black Friday, its transition to the online era, and how Amazon has influenced this transformation.
The Origin of Black Friday
The term “Black Friday” originated in the United States and refers to the day after Thanksgiving, which is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November. Traditionally, this day marked the official beginning of the Christmas shopping season in the country. The expression “Black Friday” was first used in Philadelphia in the 1960s to describe traffic chaos and increasing crowds of shoppers on city streets.
However, the most popular version of the story behind the name “Black Friday” is related to retailers’ profits. According to this narrative, stores went from red numbers (losses) to black numbers (profits) thanks to increased sales during the Christmas season. This led to the idea that Black Friday was the day when retailers finally “settled their accounts” and started making money.
The Evolution of Black Friday
Over the decades, Black Friday became a cultural phenomenon in the United States. Physical stores opened their doors early in the morning, and consumers flocked in search of special offers and discounts. Scenes of crowds waiting in front of stores before opening became emblematic of Black Friday.
However, as technology advanced and online shopping became more popular, Black Friday began to undergo a significant transformation. Traditional retail stores have had to adapt to consumers’ growing preference for online shopping.
Amazon’s Entry into the Black Friday Stage
Founded in 1994, Amazon played a pivotal role in the transformation of Black Friday. As the company became one of the e-commerce giants, it began offering its own special deals and discounts during Black Friday. This allowed shoppers to avoid the crowds of physical stores and make their purchases from the comfort of their homes.
Amazon’s focus on customer service, the convenience of online shopping and a wide variety of products quickly gained fans. As Black Friday approached, Amazon became a popular destination to find deals on electronics, fashion, appliances, toys, and more.