With TV prices down 17%, Black Friday shoppers can find ‘great deals’ | So Good News
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Video games are among the few consumer goods and services that have fallen in price over the past year – which could translate into big discounts for shoppers on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
In addition, 38% of consumers say they will buy a TV during Thanksgiving week, including Cyber Monday, according to a recent survey by the Consumer Technology Association.
“Those lucky enough to be in the TV market will find the best right now,” said Rick Kowalski, director of industry analysis and business intelligence at the association.
Why TV prices are falling amid rising prices
TV prices fell by about 17% in October 2022 compared to the same month in 2021, according to the consumer price index.
It is very cheap at a time when inflation has caused prices to rise sharply due to a large basket of consumer goods. By comparison, the index rose 7.7% in October compared to a year ago – which is the most recent but still hovering near levels not seen since the early 1980s.
TVs (and consumer electronics) often get cheaper over time as technology advances. And greater ownership of smart TVs allows manufacturers to track what consumers buy and sell it to advertisers, taking some of the money out of it, said Andrea Woroch, an investment analyst.
But prices began to rise from one month to the next starting in early 2021. Demand for consumer electronics remained strong as families upgraded home entertainment during the pandemic. At the same time, computer equipment disappeared, and more and more chains closed as the global economy began to reopen, slowing the flow of goods to retailers.
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By August 2021, this imbalance and demand was driving up TV prices by 13% year-over-year and 3% that month, according to the consumer price index.
But prices are also falling. Manufacturers have upgraded more products to meet consumers’ needs — and retailers now have more TVs, Kowalski said.
The U.S. produced 46.5 million TV sets in 2021 — a record year and more than 40 million a year, Kowalski said.
Retailers are cutting prices to clear the remaining stock, he added. And families who bought TVs at the beginning of the epidemic may not see the need to buy again, reducing what they will need.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday TV deals
Retailers have long used social media to attract shoppers on Good Friday — the Friday after Thanksgiving is the start of the holiday shopping season. Consumers often wait to buy technical ticket products until then, Kowalski said.
Deals may continue into the December holiday season, but that’s not a guarantee, experts said.
“TVs are one of the things I would recommend buying, whether you’re buying a new TV or buying it as a gift,” Woroch said. “It doesn’t mean that every TV station is going to have the best money you can get all year.”
In addition, the TV shows that are downloaded on Fridays may not be the best – they are entry-level and may not have what you want.
Some Black Friday sales from retailers like Best Buy have been jaw-dropping, especially on some popular items, said Julie Ramhold, a consumer analyst with DealNews.
Some of the best he saw among the larger models: the Samsung 75-inch for $580, the LG 70-inch for $550 and the Toshiba 32-inch for $80, which comes with the third-generation Amazon Echo Dot. Separately, he saw the Hisense 40-inch selling for $100 — a price that hasn’t been seen by any 40-inch TV manufacturer since 2018, Ramhold said.
That said, there are many other sets selling for more than $1,000, depending on the brand and model, he added.
Woroch recommends shopping for similar products using sites like DealNews and BlackFriday.com, or the PriceBlink browser plug-in. Users can also search for coupon codes or cash back on sites like CouponCabin, he said.
One thing to watch out for, experts said: Retailers sometimes sell a special, one-day-only TV set on Friday to offer door-to-door sales — but that special model often has parts or features missing from its sibling. Buyers should check the model number, read reviews and, if buying in person, ask questions of the dealer, Woroch said.
Consumers should skip “no-name” sales on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Ramhold said.
“If it doesn’t ring a bell for you or it’s incredibly cheap — like a 75-inch for $300 — I’d be wary of buying them,” Ramhold said. “Because you still get what you pay for.
“The last thing you want to do is return to a nameless house and buy it again next Friday,” he said.