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Shoppers will spend more on Black Friday 2017

By Chris Dawson October 18, 2017 - 10:15 am

Christmas will be starting early this year. According to a new Periscope By McKinsey report, 81% of UK shoppers and 44% of US shoppers plan to go bargain hunting online and in stores this Black Friday. This is a massive rise from the 22% of UK and 26% of US shoppers who said they planned to do Black Friday shopping in 2016.

The top motivating factor for shopping this Black Friday is getting enticing offers not available at other times of the year according to 37% of US shoppers, and 36% in the UK. This was followed by steep discounting which was 36% for the US, and 48% in the UK.

Will Black Friday 2017 be online or offline?

In recent years, Black Friday has been viewed as an increasingly digital shopping event. However, the 2017 research reveals that 31% (UK) and 36% (US) consumers are planning to conduct their Black Friday shopping activities both in-store and online. That’s a big jump from last year, when just 11% and 18% respectively said they would divide shopping activities between digital and physical channels.

The large jump of interest in shopping in stores this coming Black Friday may well be due to the melt down in the high street and physical fights over cut price TVs that we saw in 2015. Having seen that 2016 was a relatively benign affair shoppers may be once again tempted out onto the High Streets.

Technology shoppers will use

Looking at online behavior, the desktop computer remains the device most likely to be used when making Black Friday purchases at 45% (UK) and 35% (US), but is declining compared to 2016 when 60% and 54% planned to shop this way.

Shoppers are also planning to use smartphones more this year. Almost one-third of UK respondents (30%) and over a quarter of US (26%) plan to use them to make Black Friday purchases – up from 16.5% (UK) and 20.5% (US) last year.

What do consumers plan to buy on Black Friday 2017?

AKA what products should you run promotions on?

Consumers plan to spend more online in wider categories in 2017. When questioned if the way they shop will be different this year, UK (48%) and US (33%) respondents say they are planning to shop across more product categories when making online purchases – furthermore, 36% of UK and 27% of US respondents say they have a higher budget to spend this year.

Asked to identify which product categories they plan to shop this Black Friday, there were some interesting variations observed between US and UK consumer predilections:

  • Consumer electronics topped the list for both US (58%) and UK (52%) shoppers, with Clothing coming a close second (54% in the US; 52% in the UK)
  • Shopping for Movies, Books and Music is the #3 priority for 33% of US consumers, while Beauty and Fragrances stole the third spot with 42% of UK shoppers
  • With Christmas looming, it’s probably no surprise that Toys holds a strong appeal for both US (32%) and UK (35%) consumers.
  • Interestingly, 20% of UK consumers and around 10% of US consumers also anticipate shopping for offers in categories like Grocery and Beverages.

Time to get your Black Friday 2017 promotions plans in place

Black Friday is now just over a month away and all retailers no matter how small should be planning to maximise on the event. If you have stock which is hanging around and simply not selling then this is the ideal time of year to liquidate it with hefty discounts.

Black Friday is also often more of an emotional shopping experience than a time for carefully considered purchases. FOMO saw 2015 Black Friday shoppers struggling to flog the TVs they have fought over as the reality is that they were out of date models hence the attractive pricing.

If you’re a shopper then make a list of what you want to buy before the day and have an idea of the price point you’d like to purchase at.

If you’re a retailer then make sure that you at least have Black Friday banners on your website, a Black Friday category and clearly sign post shoppers either to the genuine bargains you have or the stock you simply want to liquidate. There will be plenty of shoppers who will buy anything if it’s marked as a bargain as well as the more considered shopper who can be tempted to buy early for Christmas if the price is right.

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