As Black Friday looms around the corner every November, brands start to get asked - will you be offering Black Friday discounts?
Aside from the original Black Friday deals (traditionally the day after Thanksgiving in the US). We now have entire Black Friday weekends, Cyber Mondays, and even Black November.
A relatively new cultural phenomenon in the UK, unlike Boxing Day sales and summer sales, which originally came from retailers need to clear unsold summer and winter clothing. Black Friday is a discounting holiday (which in the UK, where we do not celebrate Thanksgiving) has been manufactured to create false demand and encourage overconsumption.
Differing from the Summer & Winter sale seasons, which were born out of a need to make room for new season stock and offload excess merchandise filling warehouses. These reduced prices, an attempt for retailers to make back some of the losses incurred by miscalculations of demand. While still not ideal, one of the realities of doing business and a long-time UK industry tradition.
Although for some Black Friday is an amazing opportunity to purchase something they had already planned to buy for a reduced price. For the most part, Black Friday leads to impulse buying and unnecessary purchases. Black Friday, creating artificial demand levels and using up resources. In turn, forcing many items into early obsolescence and increasing the number of items entering landfills, many of which will not be properly recycled.
On top of this, with stores in the UK shut until December 2nd this year, consumers will have to hit the online Black Friday sales online. Leading to an increase in the amount of excess packaging, most of which will also be doomed for the landfill, as consumers fail to break down the packaging and recycle the materials correctly.
The reality is Black Friday is a day manufactured for the benefit of large American, and now, UK businesses. It is a holiday that does not benefit many small UK businesses, instead driving consumers to big-name brands such as Amazon, Walmart (Asda), and electronics giants Curry’s & PC World. Online fast-fashion retailers who can already offer up to 70% off year-round also benefit from Black Friday and are highly experienced in this process. Their websites are purpose-built to handle the high online traffic levels of a Black Friday- like event every time a discount or influencer collection goes live. With all of these factors in mind, we say NO to Black Friday! at Sarvin.
Instead, we say YES to timelessness! YES to small businesses! YES, to ethically made! YES, to sustainably designed! And YES to loyal customers!
At Sarvin we frequently offer discounts for our loyal customers. We currently have 15% off of all items until December 1st (2020) with code ‘FESTIVE15’, but this does not mean we have to compromise our values or get sucked into the same Black Friday consumption patterns that do not benefit us, our planet, or our customers long term.
Our Sarvin outlet offers permanently low prices on timeless Sarvin favourites, with up to 70% off some items- once these items are gone, they are gone. They have not been manufactured for Black Friday or designed for discount, our outlet is merely there to reduce waste at Sarvin, and to try to sell the stock we have not been able to move so far. The outlet stocking the same timeless Sarvin pieces we still love, but unfortunately can’t bring back, while making room in our studio for the new collection. Abandoning the new fast-paced retail calendar, unfortunately, does not eliminate waste, but avoiding discounting holidays and discounting cultures that perpetuate the problem, like Black Friday, is one way to limit overconsumption and waste for businesses and consumers alike.
Happy Shopping, Love from Team Sarvin x
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