Black Friday 2018: What is it? When is it? Where are the deals? Everything you need to know

Black Friday

It's taken a while for the rest of the world to catch on, but the United States' idea of heavily discounting items the day after Thanksgiving and sending shoppers into panic mode is too good to resist. Black Friday is its name and every year the biggest retailers on the planet (Amazon, Apple, eBay, Currys, etc) slash prices across the board, offering you some knockout deals in the run-up to Christmas. In short, it's the biggest shopping day of the year, with Americans spending a whopping $5 billion in 2017. That number is expected to increase this year, so get ready for the bargains.

What is Black Friday?

Black Friday is the busiest shopping day of the year – at its peak in 2017, shoppers were spending a mind-boggling $1 million per minute! Originally an American idea and based in real-life stores, gradually Black Friday has moved to the digital world with brands like Amazon, eBay and Apple offering huge deals across the 24-hour period. Some stores extend their deals for longer, capitalising on shoppers' hunger for a good deal. We do love a good deal, don't we?

When is Black Friday?

Traditionally Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving, which this year is Friday November 23. Black Friday's digital pal Cyber Monday takes place this year on Monday November 26. But don't be too surprised if big retailers start their Black Friday sales way in advance and continue them long after Cyber Monday.

What is Cyber Monday?

Originally, Cyber Monday had nothing to do with Black Friday, but now they're stuck together in one glorious weekend of bargain hunting and deal grabbing. 

Back in the midsts of time, Black Friday was primarily an in-store event, urging shoppers to leave their Thanksgiving leftovers behind to buy TVs, laptops, headphones, games consoles and much more at limited low prices. Similarly, Cyber Monday was all about the online deals in the run-up to Christmas, but focussing primarily on clothing and jewellery. But now, thanks to online retailers growing ever larger and our own inherent laziness, everything is online and the lines between Black Friday and Cyber Monday have blurred into one amorphous mass of discounted goods from hundreds of retailers – on and offline.

Where to get the best Black Friday deals

Hundreds of online retailers will be cutting prices across the board, but it's important to know where to look first – the most obvious choice being Amazon. It's the one place where you can buy pretty much anything, and last year they had massive reductions on speakers, headphones, musical instruments and more. And if you've been pondering the purchase of an Amazon Alexa device, now is your time to strike.

And because we're such lovely people here at Louder, we'll be highlighting the very best deals throughout Black Friday weekend. If you're after speakers, headphones, turntables or any other musical gear, be sure to check in with us!

What should you buy on Black Friday 2018?

Headphones. Headphones headphones headphones. We can't stress enough just how many pairs of headphones will be reduced in price on Black Friday, probably including some of the best headphones around. Shall we say headphones again?

Elsewhere, you're going to likely find huge savings on wireless speakers and Bluetooth speakers to turn your home into a rock 'n' roll temple. There'll undoubtedly be discounts on smart speakers from Amazon and Google, plus a deal on Prime membership.

Keep your eyes peeled and clicking fingers primed for some turntable offers, too. From the portable record players to the best turntables on the market, the likes of Amazon and eBay lowered prices on a ton of products. And don't forget to pick up some actual vinyl to play on those turntables! Amazon already have their own limited edition vinyl section, so it wouldn't be a surprise to see a sudden price drop on LPs and even the odd box set!

Last year, online merch store EMP ran a special Cyber Monday campaign with different deals every hour on hundreds of shirts, hoodies and other band-based apparel.

Oh, and there will be a Black Friday sale on subscriptions to Metal Hammer, Classic Rock and Prog magazines. Y'know, the best music magazines on Earth.