Despite being a few days away, still, the Black Friday feeding frenzy is underway and retailers around the web are offering countless deals on every kind of bike, cycling clothing, tech and accessories.
The tech team here at Cyclingnews has been busy gathering the Black Friday bike deals from everywhere into one place, and there are numerous lists of savings, including those from Wiggle, deals on GoPros and the one that always bemuses me; Black Friday turbo trainers, despite indoor cycling season also being in its peak.
Despite the swathes of great genuine deals out there this week, there are plenty of products out there that have had their prices sneakily risen in recent months, only to be ‘lowered’ again to the same price in place earlier this year, meaning some items aren’t really on any kind of exclusive sale at all. In addition to that, savings can vary depending on what item you’re looking at, with larger and more expensive items such as bikes featuring smaller percentage savings than items such as clothing or smaller accessories.
We’ve been hard at work identifying and finding deals for some time already, and plenty of preparation has gone into our Black Friday deals pages. In doing so, we have picked up a number of tips on how to get the best Black Friday deals, so read on for our top tips on how to make the most of the Black Friday cycling sales.
1. Stick to the familiar
Nobody wants to grab what they think is a great deal only for their new goods to prove unreliable, faulty, or break after a few weeks or months of use. That’s why we stick to well-known and reputable brands such as Garmin, Specialized, Wahoo, Rapha, and so on.
You may be tempted when you come across a bigger discount or a lower price on a clothing brand that you haven’t heard of before, but it might just be better to stick to what you know this Black Friday to avoid disappointment down the line.
2. Invest in things you’ll use
Every Black Friday, I buy a year’s supply of dog poop bags; a former colleague of mine would buy dishwasher tablets (boring aren’t we?) The reason is that without a doubt, they’ll get used, so why not buy your whole year’s supply at a discounted rate, rather than pay everyday prices throughout the year?
The same rule applies to a huge amount of cycling tech, too. Often change tires? You’ll probably go through tubeless sealant quickly. Still using inner tubes? Stock up now. Consumables like chain lube and bike wash will also be used, so if you can, set aside some cash knowing that you won’t need to buy them throughout the year.
3. Check out our deal pages
We have a team of writers working on searching, compiling and updating the best deals from around the internet, so why not make use of them?
From category-specific pages such as electric bikes to brand-focused pages on Wahoo, Garmin and Rapha, we’ve got just about every base covered this Black Friday, with more deals coming in every day until Cyber Monday. All of our deals are picked out by our tech staff, so you know that they’re chosen with knowledge and experience you can trust.
4. Don’t buy anything you didn’t already want
During Black Friday, it might be tempting to lunge for the best-looking deals around – even if you’ve taken our first few points into account – but before you buy, think if it’s something you really need, or if you’re just buying something because it’s been subjected to a heavy discount.
Remember, no matter what price you’re paying for something and how that relates to the original price, you’re still paying for something. If you don’t need it, you probably won’t use it, and if you don’t use it, it was still a waste of money, even at that amazing 75%-off deal price.
So, before browsing the deals pages or taking to Google, note down what you really need – whether it’s winter gloves, a new smart trainer for the dark nights ahead, or a new set of tires – and stick to those items. Don’t get distracted by those shiny deals on non-essential items.
5. Compare prices and check the price history
This is an important one. As we noted above, don’t get caught out by ‘sales’ which are really just artificially high prices lowered to the price point items were earlier on in the year.
It’s a good time, then, to get a price history comparison tool in your bookmarks and check whether you’re actually getting a deal or whether you’re just paying an earlier price in the ‘sale’. The ‘Camelizer (opens in new tab)‘ is a very useful Chrome extension for anyone shopping on Amazon, or the website from which it bases its data, CamelCamelCamel (opens in new tab)for anyone not using Chrome.
In addition to that, remember to compare prices across retailers, too. On Cyclingnews, each deal we recommend has not only passed our personal threshold of ‘is this actually a good deal?’, but also compared it against other retailers to ask ‘is this the best price available on this product?’. If you’re ignoring point three above and doing the shopping yourself (no hard feelings), don’t forget to check the price of the items on your want list across various reputable retailers to make sure you’re getting the best deal out there this Black Friday.
6. Check the returns policy
Here’s a slightly naughty trick, but certainly one that could save you money.
The biggest worry people have when buying in the lead-up to Black Friday is that the deal will get even better over the weekend, and if they just waited a few more days, they could have saved an extra few percent. The risk in waiting is that it sells out before you commit, and you lose out.
The trick is to buy early, then keep checking the price, and if it comes down, buy again at the cheaper price. Once the weekend is over, return the first one. The reason you should check your returns policy is that some will make you pay for the return shipping, which could undo any savings.