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Warnings and advice about Black Friday sales in Spain

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The OCU consumer association has once again started a campaign to warn consumers over potential scams related to Black Friday, as well as similar promotions around another day gaining traction in Spain, Singles Day.

The OCU first note that legally, when a discounted product is offered with a reduced price, it is mandatory that the previous price or the discount percentage appear next to the discounted price.

And that “previous price” must be the lowest that would have been applied to that product in the preceding thirty days.

This year, 2022, Black Friday is on Friday, November 25. In order to monitor the potential evolution of discounts, the OCU began monitoring prices on October 25, thus monitoring the 30 days before the discount is applied. The association has done this for the last 7 years.

However, before we reach Black Friday, we have Singles Day. Singles Day or Guanggun Jie, was celebrated on November 11, originally a Chinese holiday that celebrated the pride of being single… but with the help of online retailers such as Alibaba, it too has become a global day for discounts.

Singles Day intends to become one of the consumption milestones in November: encouraged by offers and promotions, there are consumers who may take advantage of the claims of online stores to equip themselves or go ahead with Christmas purchases.

What will they find?

This year, the OCU began to compare prices from mid-October, looking at more than 16,500 products. What they found is that around a third, 36%, could be bought cheaper on the days prior to this Singles Day. That is to say they were actually more expensive on the day the supposed discounts were applied. Barely 2% of products are cheaper on November 11 than on any previous day. The remaining 62% have not changed their price between October and the day.

Only Alcampo and Samsung have a significant percentage of products that were cheaper than in previous weeks (14% and 28%, respectively). In the rest of the online stores, either the price has remained the same, or we find that there is a significant percentage of products more expensive than in October: this is the case in 18 of the 69 online stores visited.

There is no type of product that has experienced significant discounts: electric scooters and electronic book readers are the only ones in which we detect some decreases (but in both cases the increases are greater).

In short, according to the OCU, if you think that “Eleven, eleven” is a good day to buy, you are wrong: you are probably buying a more expensive product on that day than in previous days.

Thinking of shopping online on Singles Day, Black Friday or Cyber ​​Monday? The OCU offers some tips.

  • Remember the importance of a rational and sustainable consumption, and the need to be vigilant so as not to be surprised: don’t let your guard down.
  • Comparing is the best way to save: consult comparators and shop around.
  • You can withdraw from the purchase, if you are not convinced, and you have 14 days to return the product purchased online without giving reasons.
  • Make sure that you buy online from sites that offer you guarantees: make sure that the page has a security protocol, https, and be wary of poorly translated pages, with manifest errors, etc.
  • Read the Terms and Conditions of Use first and pay attention to the tricks of online stores.
  • Choose to pay by card or Paypal instead of transfers.
  • Keep the documents that prove the purchase, you will need them if you have to claim.

The OCU is also asking for your help in highlighting potential scams, especially around Black Friday.

In their monitoring they are also aware of any confusing or misleading information, ads of alleged discounts that do not exist, ghost offers, irregularities or bad practices in the indication of prices.

In previous studies they found that some online stores used the maximum price of the previous period instead of the minimum as the price before the discount, or else indicated a reference price that had never been available in that month.

If you find suspicious offers in this Black Friday campaign, share your experience on social networks using the hashtag #timofertasBF which the OCU will monitor and investigate as many as they can.

 

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