Although UK brick-and-mortar retailers witnessed a rather quiet Black Friday, online retailers enjoyed a record-breaking spend of 1.1 billion pounds, according to data from Experian-IMRG. This impressive amount is reportedly a 36 percent increase from 2014 and more than the 1.07 billion pound figure previously predicted.
“Black Friday has once again proven to be a major draw for British consumers, with a record breaking 1.1 billion pounds estimated to have been spent in the 24 hour period," said James Miller, senior retail consultant at Experian Marketing Services in a statement "This is a 36 percent year-on-year increase in spend which clearly shows that this date is likely to continue to be a permanent fixture in the online retail calendar in the UK, despite the lower than expected footfall in bricks and mortar stores."
“Consumers now see online shopping as a leisure activity, with pre-Christmas discount retail events such as Black Friday driven by this. Retailers and delivery networks should prepare for increasing interest in the coming weeks too, with “Cyber Monday” – traditionally when consumers look for more online shopping deals – occurring today with an expected 943 million pounds in sales likely to occur, up 31 percent year-on-year."
Andy Mulcahy, editor, IMRG, added: "Black Friday appeared to be in a state of transition this year, as many retailers extended their campaigns to run over a week or even longer to ease the pressure on their operations. Nevertheless, it seems there is still a perception that the day itself is the time to get the best deals as it drew record volumes to retail sites - most likely boosted by shoppers who stayed away from the high street in order to avoid a repeat of the scenes from last year. Having so many different ways to browse and shop on retail sites will have played a part as well, with 495 million pounds being spent on smartphones and tablets on Black Friday."
Miller stressed that the holiday shopping rush was likely far from being over. “Manic Monday – the 7th December is also coming up fast and has previously been viewed by consumers as their last chance to order goods online and ensure pre-Christmas delivery. This year we are expecting 733 million pounds to be spent on this day, up 10 percent year-on-year. In addition, retailers with bricks and mortar stores should also consider preparing for the post-Christmas sales rush, which Experian has found is more likely to be attractive to consumers who prefer shopping in-store.”