Is it the beginning of the end for Black Friday?

Is it the beginning of the end for Black Friday?

It might be Christmas next week, but the figures are in for Black Friday 2018. What was once the USA’s biggest shopping event has travelled across the pond and many retailers offer discounts throughout ‘Cyber Week’ tempting shoppers to spend ahead of Christmas.

Originally an American phenomenon, Black Friday is now a firm fixture in the UK Retail Calendar. Sales over the years for Black Friday have been so high that it has become a crucial day for retailers and arguably the biggest day of the year for shoppers. But with statistics showing that a drop in both footfall in stores and value on spending in this current year compared to previous years, is it a portent that Black Friday is past its peak? 

The Black Friday that hit the stores and websites a few weeks ago provided little relief for high streets as shoppers appeared jaded by discounted campaigns with sales remaining flat at 0.4%. Data from the monthly High Street Sales Tracker showed that in-store sales declined by 2.6 per cent year-on-year last month – making this years’ Black Friday event the 10th month in a row for negative in-store growth. This change in shopping habits and the contrast between bricks-and-mortar and online has clearly defined this crucial trading period for retailers.

Clicks vs Bricks 

Once again, online came on top with analysis from Loqate/GBG showing thatonline transactions climbed 46% by 4pm. Separate data from retail analystsSpringboard said that by 1pm footfall at shops was down 7% from a year ago andhigh streets saw a 6.4% decline while shopping centres saw visitor numbers drop 9.1%.

Despite this evidence, retail giant John Lewis prevailed against the gloom on the day as Black Friday for them resulted in smashing sales records by a 7.7%increase in comparison to the previous year’s figures. In particular sales in its fashion and beauty departments rose by 13.1%. 

Under pressure

With the distinctive increase in online transactions, the pressure was on forthe mobile phones, with data showing the majority of shoppers were snapping updeals from the comfort of their own homes. For Argos, up to half of its orders on Friday morning were made through a handset which meant they were up whopping 40% from 2017.

Consumer Group Which also revealed that 87% of Black Friday deals were cheaper at other points of the year. So could all this mean the start of a Black Friday phase out?

One thing’s for sure, there will be lots of changes in the retail industry next year. What are your predictions?

Do you think Black Friday is actually here to stay? Tweet us your thoughts! 
Neo PR

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