Black Friday: How it might not be the cheapest day to buy items

Shoppers warned to brace for a Black Friday price hike: Some popular items are found to be up to 35% more expensive on the day

  • Shoppers warned to brace for higher prices on Black Friday 
  • Research has found popular items can be as much as 35% more expensive 
  • Mobiles, coffee machines and TVs see the biggest difference in cost 


Shoppers could be forking out significantly more for products this Black Friday than at other times during the year, new research claims.

Analysis of a basket of goods in the two months before Black Friday 2020, on the PriceSpy site, showed the same ten items cost a total of 18 per cent more on the day itself – a difference of £488.66.

The items included some of the most popular sold on the platform during Black Friday – now a huge event – last year such as headphones, coffee machines, laptops, mobiles and games consoles.

Overall, the research found that, generally, the best prices for items over the course of a year are almost exclusively outside of Black Friday.

A number of popular items are more expensive to buy on Black Friday than other times of year

Research into the 14 most popular categories on PriceSpy found that significant average price differences for the same products before and during Black Friday, often to the tune of hundreds of pounds per item.

Categories with the biggest average price increases include coffee machines with a difference of £63.54 when comparing the lowest price to Black Friday and mobiles with a gap of £49.33.

TVs also saw a difference of £31.66 and hair straighteners were on average £21.84 more expensive during the shopping holiday. 

The biggest difference in price out of ten popular items bought on Black Friday last year was with the Sage Appliances Barista Express.

The coffee machine cost £540 on Black Friday last year but was available for £399.99 in the period before – a difference of £140.01 and an increase of 35 per cent. 

A Samsung TV was also found to be £50 more expensive on Black Friday last year – going up from £399 to £449.

Meanwhile, GHD Platinum Styler + straighteners were £51.01 more expensive, rising to £151 on the shopping day. 

Apple products also saw price differences with second generation AirPods costing £13 more on Black Friday last year whilst the iPhone 12 cost £44 more.  

PRICE OF POPULAR ITEMS BOUGHT ON BLACK FRIDAY BEFORE EVENT
Item    Lowest pre-Black Friday Price (Sept  to 27 Nov 2020)    Black Friday Price   
(27 Nov 2020)
Difference   Date of the lowest price in the last year (Oct 20 to Oct 21)  
Apple AirPods (2nd Generation) with Charging Case   £105.00   £118.00   + £13.00   Sep-21  
Samsung TV UE50TU8500   £399.00   £449.00   + £50.00   Oct-21  
Fridgemaster MS83430FFS (Silver)   £379.00   £449.00   + £70.00   May-21  
Sage Appliances Barista Express   £399.99   £540.00   +£140.01   Sep-21  
Asus Chromebook 12 C223NA-GJ0014   £178.00   £194.99   +£16.99   Jun-21  
Apple iPhone 12 64GB   £680.00   £724.00   +£44.00   Jun-21  
Garmin Forerunner 245   £179.00   £219.99   +£40.99   Sep-21  
Microsoft Xbox Series S 512GB   £225.40   £269.36   +£43.96   Aug-21  
Numatic Henry   £99.00   £117.70   +£18.70   Jun-21  
GHD Platinum Styler +   £99.99   £151.00   +£51.01   Feb-21  
TOTAL    £2,744.38   £3,233.04   +£488.66   N/A  
Source: PriceSpy         

In the run-up to Black Friday this year, prices have also already steadily been increasing.

The average price of popular items has risen 2.25 per cent between the start of September and mid-October.

However, for those looking to make the most of deals this year, this price increase should slowly start to drop in mid-November, which is when the deals will start to kick in.

Last year, overall prices dropped 12 days before the event but the overall reduction was only 0.4 per cent while 30 per cent of the products in PriceSpy’s most popular categories cost more on Black Friday compared to 14 days earlier.

Ossie Bayram, PriceSpy UK country manager, said: ‘Black Friday is a time for many of us to hunt out deals, for Christmas shopping or simply to treat ourselves. 

‘But while there are no doubt many to be had, shoppers should be wary that many of these so-called “deals” are actually more costly than elsewhere in the year.

‘With incomes seeing a squeeze due to inflation and energy price hikes as we approach Black Friday, it’s even more important not to get sucked into the hype and spend more than you need to. 

‘Instead, we recommend for those looking shop, to make sure they take their time.

‘Research the items you’re looking for, create a wish list to stick to and look at price histories to find the best time to buy the products you want.’

PriceSpy examined thousands of prices across 42 products in 14 different categories from 1 September to 27 November 2021, through its price history tool.

Data on the lowest price in the last year was taken from PriceSpy from October 2020 to October 2021 from PriceSpy’s price history tool.

The price drop estimate was taken from analysing total product prices via PriceSpy last year to show when prices will begin to fall.

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