The day after Thanksgiving has long been one of Americans' favorite shopping days, and a growing portion of those purchases is moving to the digital realm. Online sales in 2017 hit record highs, with U.S. shoppers making $7.9 billion in digital purchases on Thanksgiving and Black Friday, up 17.9% from 2016.
One of the biggest beneficiaries of that trend is e-commerce leader Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN). In typical fashion, the bookseller-turned-everything-store is looking to leverage its advantage by expanding its Black Friday deals to an entire week. Amazon's Seven Days of Black Friday Deals officially kicked off on Friday, Nov. 16 and will run through Nov. 23. Here's a look at what Amazon has in store for shoppers.
In one of the biggest deals of the season, Amazon announced that it's extending its free shipping to all customers, with no minimum purchase required. Typically, this is a benefit reserved for Prime customers and those who spend $25 or more on their shopping orders. The shipping promotion began on Nov. 5 and will run "for a limited time," though Amazon has not revealed when the deal will end. The offer applies to "hundreds of millions of items -- the largest free shipping selection in the country," Amazon said in a press release.
Toys R Amazon?
Amazon is looking to fill the void left by the demise of the last remaining toy-centric big-box retailer, Toys R Us. In a press release, the company revealed that customers could save as much as 40% off some top names in the toy industry, including Mattel brands Barbie, Hot Wheels, and Fisher-Price. Amazon is also offering 30% discounts on a selection of strategy board games and adult party games. Tapping into the hottest movie of the year, the company is offering 30% off the littleBits Avengers Hero Inventor Kit.
Shoppers have long turned to Amazon in search of the best deals on electronics, and the company is offering plenty for them to find. High-definition TVs are a hot item this year, and there's no shortage of opportunities:
- Sony's XBR65X850F 65-Inch 4K TV (2018 Model), which normally sells for $1,398, is on sale for only $998 -- a $400 savings.
- Sony's XBR75X850F 75-Inch 4K TV (2018 Model), typically selling for $1,998, can be had for $1,798.00 -- a 10% discount.
- Samsung's QN65Q9F Flat 65" QLED 4K UHD 9 Series Smart TV (2018 Model), which retails for $3,799, is selling for $2,998 -- a 21% savings.
Additional big savings can be found on select Chromebooks, Acer gaming laptops, Dell monitors, and HP printers.
The company has reserved some of its best savings for its most popular Amazon-branded devices, like its Alexa-enabled Echo smart speakers, with deals being available at various times and dates during the sales period.
- The second-generation Echo smart speaker can be had for $69, a $30.99 savings. The discount increases to $80 when you buy two for $119.98.
- Shoppers can get the all-new Echo Dot, the mini version of the smart speaker, for $24: more than half off the retail price.
- The second-gen Echo Plus, with its built-in smart-home hub, is on sale for $109.99, a $40 savings.
- The all-new Echo Show smart speaker with viewing screen is selling for $179.99, a $50 savings. Customers who buy two for $339.98 can save $120.
- Shoppers can add a smart plug, which normally retails for $24.99, to any Echo device for just $5.
- Save 30% on a Fire TV Stick 4K with all-new Alexa Voice Remote selling for $34.99.
- The Toshiba 32" 720p HD Smart TV-Fire TV Edition will be only $129.99, a $50 savings.
- Save 24% off the Insignia 39" 1080p Full HD Smart TV-Fire TV Edition, at only $189.99.
- The Toshiba 50" 4K Ultra HD Smart TV – Fire TV Edition offers 25% savings at $299.99.
Amazon has significant savings available in a variety of other categories -- too many to cover here -- including fashion, household and home furnishings, smart-home products, and gaming, so check its press release for more details.
The fine print
It's important to reiterate that these deals will be available at different times on different days, and not all items will be on sale at the same time. This is Amazon's way of getting customers to check in early and often during the holiday shopping season. Additionally, some offers will be for a limited time, and while supplies last.
Amazon also said that Prime members will get exclusive early access to select Amazon device deals by shopping with Alexa: "Starting November 17 at 9pm PT [Pacific Time] until November 21 at 9pm PT just ask Alexa, 'Alexa, what are my deals' or visit amazon.com/voiceshopping."
As in years past, shoppers will find some of the best deals of the season on Amazon, but it takes a little more effort to capitalize on them. Amazon suggests downloading its app and signing up for notifications regarding specific items on your wish list.
John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool’s board of directors. Danny Vena owns shares of Amazon and Mattel. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Amazon. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.