21 April 2024

Black Friday Sales: Are you getting the real deal?

With an increase in marketing about bargains, retailers and consumers are being urged to think hard about bargains being offered as ‘Black Friday’ sales to make sure they get the deal they think they are getting.

This reminder has come from the Commerce Commission as there is an increase in marketing about bargains, sales and discounts on Black Friday, and in the lead up to Christmas.

Black Friday Sales
Do your research, shop around, advises Commerce Commission

“We want consumers to get the bargains they are promised. We’re reminding retailers to make sure that advertised savings are genuine savings and we’re reminding consumers to do their research, shop around, and check to make sure that they get the deal they think they are getting,” says Commerce Commission Chair, Anna Rawlings

“For example, if a business claims a price is 50% off then their customers should save 50% off the usual selling price. Businesses should not bump up prices ahead of a sale in order to claim a bigger discount at sale time. Fine print should not be used to hide important information or change the meaning of a headline offer. As our recent prosecution of PAK’nSAVE Mangere shows, businesses must also ensure the price displayed and advertised is the price charged at the checkout,” she said.

In Oct 2020, Kennedy’s Foodcentre (2003) Limited trading as PAK’nSAVE Mangere was fined $78,000 for discrepancies between the promotional price displayed in-store, and/or advertised on their website and the price charged at the till. In one case, sliced salmon was displayed at $8.99 but charged at $10.79, and similarly, mushrooms displayed at $4.99 were charged $6.99 at the supermarket checkout. Kennedy’s Foodcentre pleaded guilty to six charges of making false and/or misleading representations under the Fair Trading Act 1986.

Last year Kiwis spent more than $650 million* over three days around ‘Black Friday’ and sales have now overtaken ‘Boxing Day’ in terms of retail spending, according to data from electronic payments company, Paymark.

“Consumers should do some price comparison research. Get an idea of the price you could usually expect to pay for an item and then satisfy yourself that the saving you are offered is a real saving. Ultimately, ask yourself whether the price you are asked to pay looks like good value to you, regardless of whether it is discounted or on sale,” Rawlings added.

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