Walmart's Month-Long Black Friday Promo Is Officially Returning For 2021

With the vaccination rollout, many of the changes the coronavirus pandemic brought about have been receding. This year, for example, children can go trick-or-treating, albeit with some sensible precautions. However, Walmart has announced that it will keep its pandemic measures in place for this year's Black Friday events. This includes spreading the deals across the month.

Walmart explains in an announcement on its website that this means Black Friday Deals for Days will return with its month-long savings. The first savings event will be available online on November 3 and in stores on November 5. These days will see massive discounts on Walmart's electronic and toy offerings. The second deals event occurs a week later, online on November 10 and in stores on November 12, focusing on more general goods like apparel and hardlines. A third event is set to occur at the end of the month, though Walmart has yet to release details about it.

The first two online deals events start at 7 p.m. EST on both November 3 and November 10, but Walmart+ members can anticipate an extra special perk this year.

Black Friday starts even earlier

Walmart+ members get a four-hour shopping block before non-members for 2021's Black Friday Deals for Days (per the brand). Walmart+ members can snag deals on these same days starting at 3 p.m. EST. Still, you don't have to wait until your jack-o-lanterns rot to get in on saving. Select goods, like the Ninja 4QT Air Fryer, have already been reduced to Black Friday prices for as long as supplies last.

Walmart's decision not to revert to a more traditional Black Friday might be a sign that the commercial holiday has effectively ended. While a pandemic that kept the public social distancing probably accelerated the shift away from Black Friday, it seems like the natural conclusion to pre-existing trends.

Back in 2013, The New Yorker reported that the competition between businesses to see who could have the most spectacular Black Friday sales meant that the stores were opening on Thanksgiving itself. However, in 2020, NBC noted that the sales had grown more diffuse thanks to the increased preference for online shopping. A survey by Accenture found that 64% of shoppers said they were not interested in shopping on Black Friday.  

"I think that Black Friday in October will become the norm because people are looking to buy their holiday gifts early," Aidan Cole, co-founder of the cosmetics brand HIDE, told The Food Institute. This year, it seems Walmart is already ready to accommodate the earliest holiday shoppers.