Alternative Black Friday Ideas 2020

A growing number of retailers are looking for alternative Black Friday ideas as a new approach to this period of over-consumption. We highlight the most unique and interesting anti-Black Friday concepts for 2020.

2020 has been an interesting year! With the World thrown into chaos by COVID-19 and the increasing impact of climate change, consumers are now more than ever beginning to question their purchase decisions with sustainability in mind. Alternative Black Friday ideas are evolving accordingly, with an increasing number of retailers taking a new approach to this traditional period of over-consumption.

While many eCommerce businesses will feel extra pressure to sell more due to COVID, many retailers are taking the opportunity to use this unusual year as the platform for a new approach, including alternative Black Friday ideas.

Allbirds: Black Friday Price Increase

Sustainable sneaker champion Allbirds have announced that for Black Friday 2020 they will actually be increasing all their prices!

Rather than encouraging unnecessary consumption through discounting, Allbirds will increase the price of all sneakers by $1. This extra $1 will be donated directly to Fridays For Future, the international climate movement founded by Swedish youth activist Greta Thunberg.

“Black Friday deals may satiate momentary desire, but their impact on the planet is a lot more long-lasting. That’s why Allbirds wanted to do things a bit differently this year, flipping tradition and doubling down on our commitment to sustainability.”

Allbirds Price Increase Black Friday
Allbirds: Black Friday Price Increase. Source:

Public Fibre: Buy More Rubbish This Black Friday

UK based store Public Fibre is an eCom store curating a selection of sustainable, ethical and conscious fashion and wellbeing brands. Their ethos is to provide a selection of brands that don’t compromise aesthetic or design for social or environmental practice.

For Black Friday 2020, Public Fibre has introduced the ‘Buy More Rubbish’ initiative, offering consumers the chance to add some of the most common rubbish items to their order! Rather than send consumers the actual rubbish item, Public Fibre will, in turn, donate 100% of the proceeds to The Ocean Cleanup initiative.

Get your rubbish now at !

Public Fibre- Buy More Rubbish This Black Friday
Public Fibre- Buy More Rubbish This Black Friday. Source:

Bearaby: Pause Before You Purchase

Bearaby, a US-based sustainable weighted blanket brand has created a unique and imaginative ‘Pause Before You Purchase’ campaign aimed at giving consumers space and time to make a considered purchase decision.

Going against every eCommerce ‘best practice’ for conversion rate optimisation, Bearaby has intentionally slowed down the purchase journey on their website for Black Friday. Going against the frenzied encouragement to buy seen with other retailers, Bearaby has introduced meditative pauses randomly into their website, encouraging “mindful decision without regret”.

We think being mindful is a message that resonates not only with our own audience but also highlights a larger conversation on how DTC brands can play a part in shaping a new wave of conscious consumerism, starting with the consumer’s well-being even before they purchase your product. We know this movement has the potential to catch on – we don’t want to own it, we want it to spread.

Dr. Kathrin Hamm, Founder, Bearaby
Bearaby- Pause Before You Purchase
Bearaby- Pause Before You Purchase. Source:

Ikea: Green Friday Product Buy-Back

Furniture giant Ikea is using the platform of Black Friday to launch its new ‘Buy-Back’ initiative.

The service provides customers with the option of selling their used furniture back to Ikea, with the company then reselling these items via their ‘AS-IS’ department. This greatly extends the life of the furniture items, preventing them from going to landfill, in turn reducing the number of new items sold with customers instead opting for this cheaper, more sustainable option.

The Buy-Back scheme is not strictly an Anti-Cyber Weekend initiative, however, Ikea is utilising the increased consumer and search interest during this period to launch the initiative. The ‘Green Friday’ launch will aim to provide the scheme with a platform to become a major part of the Ikea offer.

Ikea Green Friday Buy Back Scheme
Ikea Green Friday Buy Back Scheme. Source:

GiffGaff: Check Your Drawers

UK mobile carrier GiffGaff has launched its anti-cyber weekend 2020 campaign entitled ‘Check Your Drawers’. Rather than pushing discounts on a new phone, GiffGaff is encouraging consumers to check their drawers for old phones to either refurbish, recycle, or donate to charity.

Research done by GiffGaff in collaboration with LadBible estimates that there are 55 million unused old phones in the UK alone. This could equate to £598 GBP per household through the reselling of these phones to be refurbished and reused.

“Consumers are becoming more demanding and are expecting brands to act more responsibly. I think we’re incredibly conscious in the telco space, but there’s a lot we can do to act much more responsibly and much more sustainably. We have the environmental impact of our business front and centre within everything that we do.”

Georgina Bramall, Head of Brand Strategy, GiffGaff

There are many approaches towards the perfect alternative Black Friday idea, but the key concept is to engage consumers in your brand values. This has the potential to be the springboard for a long-term relationship, rather than just a one-off purchase of your product at a very low margin.

For further inspiration, be sure to check-out the leading ideas from 2018 and 2019.

  • Alternative Black Friday 2019: Ideas for a new approach. Read more
  • Anti-Black Friday 2018: Retailers fighting mindless consumption. Read more

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