The countdown has begun, as the annual discount extravaganza looms. Black Friday, or more appropriately “Black Fiveday” as it has been dubbed this year, is due to kick off in just 5 weeks’ time. Here’s all you need to know ahead of the event.
When is Black Friday 2016?
This year the Black Friday deals are due to land on 25th November 2016, but the one-day peak is expected to end in favour of an extended Black Fiveday – Thursday 24th November through to Cyber Monday on 28th November.
Recent research from Salmon has estimated that a record £5 billion will be spent across the Black Friday and Cyber Monday weekend: and that’s just online.
What were Black Friday sales in 2015?
In the UK Black Friday is largely an online event, with UK online sales up by 36% year on year to £1.1 billion on Black Friday 2015 (source: Business Reporter). This was the UK’s first ever recorded £1billion+ online shopping day.
How should retailers prepare for Black Friday 2016?
The main preparation will have already been done: ensuring mobile optimisation for greater traffic and usability, website high capacity testing, and deciding the all-important promotions.
Retailers must prepare contingency plans to respond to issues during Black Fiveday, to prevent a negative customer experience impacting upon brand loyalty. Retail Assist’s 24 x 7 IT Help Desk is a critical service for our fashion retail clients, as we proactively monitor and detect issues before outages arise, and fix problems efficiently in real-time.
Omnichannel must still be retailers’ top priority, as consumers will demand a Black Friday brand experience that is consistent across all channels, with a full range of order and delivery options, to ensure they can really buy anywhere, at any time.
Preparing for an increased amount of returns must also be a top consideration: as consumers expect to buy more across the Black Friday weekend, they will inevitably return more. This calls for a fully integrated omnichannel supply chain solution, with 100% flexibility and availability to fulfil, with orders returned across any channel (i.e. buy online and return in store, the bugbear of many a consumer).
We’re currently researching Black Friday 2016 trends, so look our for our survey results and predictions soon.