Black Friday has become an annual tradition here in the U.K.. The sale, which started in America, reached our shores in 2010 and by 2019, it was estimated that we spent £6 billion (research from finder.com) on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. But how did this tradition start? And how, with the U.K. in lockdown will Black Friday look this year?
The origins of Black Friday
Black Friday originated in America and the term was phrased as early as 1869, when two bankers bought a large amount of gold, in the hope that this would drive the prices up and they would be rich.
However, on September the 24th, 1869, the US gold market crashed, and the term Black Friday was created. It wasn’t until the 1950s that Black Friday was used in relation to the Friday after Thanksgiving. Due to lots of people travelling around Philadelphia for the holiday season, police weren’t allowed to take that Friday off, and they had to work extra-long shifts- the police named this day Black Friday.
The term spread through Philadelphia and later it grew throughout the country. By the 1980s the term was widely used across America by retailers referring to the yearly sales on the Friday after Thanksgiving.
It became so popular over in the US, U.K. companies introduced the sale here in 2010, but it wasn’t until 2013 when things really got out of hand.
The U.K. Chaos
Amazon introduced Black Friday to the U.K. in. 2010. This was so successful customers complained that popular products had sold out within seconds. Due to the activity on the website, Amazon kept crashing as they couldn’t handle the traffic.
In 2013, Asda brought about the first in-store Black Friday sale, and it was absolute chaos. People flocked to their nearest Asda to try and take advantage of the 70% off. There were reports of fighting and broken bones as people gave it everything to get their hands on the best deal.
The success of Asda’s Black Friday quickly caught on and many other shops introduced in store and online Black Friday deals with 2018 seeing the average person spending £346 on the sale.