Monday, November 28, 2011

Black Friday VS Cyber Monday

I'm not sure what all the fuss is about. Black Friday is a day when shoppers camp out overnight to be first in line, to be awarded a special bracelet, ticket or coupon, and prepare to make a mad dash through the doors at midnight or whatever ridiculous hour of the morning the store may open for business. People push and shove each other, elbows fly and words are often exchanged over who saw something first. This year pepper spray was involved in a few of the more raucous incidents and there was a shooting. In past years, people have been trampled, seriously injured and even killed.

Now, I have no hard numbers to back this up, but my strong suspicion is relatively few people actually get the super fantastic bargain which drove them to plot, scheme and endure all this insanity in the first place. The stores know full well the limited number of items they can afford to sell at or below cost. They bank on these super  deals drawing people in and then up-selling, pushing more costly substitutes and encouraging additional purchases to drive revenues and increase profitability.

And we, the public, dutifully line up for the kill. The handful of successful bargain hunters are paraded in the media, while the vast majority mutter to themselves and drown their sorrows with a series of purchases of perfectly acceptable substitutes.

The technorati, on the other hand, will wait for Cyber-Monday. From the safety and comfort of their own living room, kitchen or bedroom (wherever they use their computers) they will relentlessly pound the keys until they have located and ordered exactly what they wanted. Oh, that particular item may be out of stock or the wrong color, but no matter. Bring on the search engines and they will find it somewhere else in a flash. Not sure if the alleged sale price is really a bargain? Let's do a quick look around at other sellers and compare, without ever leaving our chair

Maybe you needed those lace up boots with the fur lining but couldn't get to the department store that carried them. No worries. We'll order them on-line and, look, they are the same price and UPS will bring them right to your door at not extra cost.

There are entire web sites devoted to bargains the year round. Sites that help you find the best price or locate obscure or unusual items.

With the abundance of social networking sites, we can even stay in close touch with our shopping buddies, taking tips and comparing notes with one another. City, state and even country boundaries don't exist. Often we can cut out the middleman and buy direct from the source.

Now, wasn't that easier than participating in the madness of occupy mall street?

Captain Joe

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