Imported into the UK from our American cousins, Black Friday is a bargain-filled shopping bonanza which kicks off the annual pre-Christmas retail frenzy. For retailers it can be both a blessing and a curse, offering the chance to boost profits – but at what cost?
What does it mean for retailers?
On Black Friday, retailers are likely to see increased demand as shoppers come out in force – and they will be hoping for increased profits to match. However, experts say Black Friday sales do not necessarily make shoppers spend more, but they do spend earlier, shifting their festive spending to late November and early December rather than in the weeks immediately before Christmas. The Visa UK Expenditure Index showed that overall spending in 2015 increased by 2.1% in November compared with the same month in 2014, but spending in December rose by just 1%.
High street or online?
After previous years in which high street sales have descended into physical chaos, from stampedes to crowd crushes, internet shopping now tempts many people to bag their bargains online.
If you run a brick-and-mortar shop, consider boosting your social media presence around this time of year to catch customers online and tempt them in. If you operate an eCommerce business, prepare by optimising your site for high volumes of traffic to check it can cope with demand to prevent crashes and disappointment.
How do I stand out as an independent retailer?
Whether or not you choose to participate in Black Friday, sales are not the be all and end all. More and more customers are turning their backs on large corporations in favour of supporting smaller, local businesses which can offer something much unique. Instead of copying large business, emphasise your products’ exclusivity and your service and you might just come out on top.
If you are an independent retailer who would benefit from talking to an insurance broker with similar values to yourself, we’d be delighted to talk to you. Please contact us on 01527 874092 to talk to our friendly team.