Takealot, the country’s largest e-commerce platform, has denied allegations that it bumped up prices in the week prior to Black Friday to make discounts look bigger than they actually are.
The company says its prices fluctuate continually due to a number of external factors, which may have given that impression.
This after consumers accused the platform of raising prices before activating specials, posting screenshots of how prices changed since Monday.
Twitter user @Tumelo_Mdaka posted two pictures of how a Nikon D5300 24.2MP DSLR Twin Lens Value Bundle cost R7,489 on Monday, compared to R8,489 on Friday.
“Meaning [TakeALot] increase prices just before Friday so they look like they drop by the time the sale comes,” @Tumelo_Mdaka said.
Black Friday is just a joke. The first image was taken on Monday and the second one was taken just today. But same camera. Meaning these companies increase prices just before Friday so they look like they drop by the time the sale comes. @TAKEALOT pic.twitter.com/xCCHLvjQKf— Tumelo. (@Tumelo_Mdaka) November 22, 2018
@danie10 tweeted that the Huawei Mate 29 Lite cost R7,999 in the days leading up to Black Friday, but at 00:30 on Friday it cost R8,499 and by late morning R8,999.
In one incident, sent to Business Insider South Africa, screenshots show how the price of a Phillips S7530/50 shaver jumped from R1,799 on Monday to R2,319 on Friday.
Takealot’s chief marketing officer Julie-Anne Walsh said prices regularly shift due to a change in supplier price, how prices are benchmarked to competitors, and whether Takealot sells a product directly or on behalf of a seller using its platform to reach customers.
“What we can confirm is that our Blue Dot Sale discounts (Takealot’s Black Friday deals) are legitimate - in other words, at a lower price point than the regular list price,” Walsh told Business Insider.
She said the platform has already seen a record number of visitors on Black Friday morning with transactions worth over R11.5 million.
Takealot’s Blue Dot Sale continues throughout the weekend up until Tuesday, with hundreds of new deals added every day.
Business Insider SA is part of Naspers-owned 24.com. Takealot and Superbalist are also in the Naspers stable.
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