London, UK, 23 October 2015 – Retailers should be ready for a rise of almost a third in spending on Black Friday (27th November) this year, to £1.07 billon, according to new figures produced by Experian, in conjunction with IMRG, the UK’s industry association for online retailers. This would be the first time ever UK online retail sales exceed £1bn in a single day.
Due to increased consumer awareness of discounting by retailers around the pre-Christmas shopping dates, Experian and IMRG predict this retail season to rapidly surpass 2014. The main pre-Christmas shopping days which will see uplift in spending include: Black Friday, Cyber Monday (30th November) and Manic Monday (7th December). Boxing Day and New Year’s Day are also expected to see large increases in spend compared to 2014.
Experian-IMRG spend predictions for 2015
James Miller, Senior Retail Consultant at Experian Marketing Services, said:
“The 2015 Christmas period is on track to be another record year for online retail in the UK. We expect that Black Friday will continue to break new ground for online shopping, passing the billion pound mark for the first time. With consumers now expecting great bargains and trouble free service, retailers must ensure that they have planned their marketing strategies and logistics around these key dates, with carefully prepared cross-channel campaigns, engaging the right customers, via the right media.
“The different types of customer driving the pre- and post- Christmas sales rush must also be taken into account. Retailers should be aware of the strain that will be placed on delivery networks in the run up to Christmas, and also provide a good level of in-store support for the Boxing Day and New Year’s Day rush.”
Justin Opie, Managing Director at IMRG said:
“The size and scale of Black Friday 2014 took everyone by surprise, overwhelming some carrier and retailer operations, as order volumes came in at a full 30% higher than expectation. All the indicators point to a much larger Black Friday this year – both in terms of greater numbers of retailers taking part and growing shopper interest – so the opportunity is vast, but there are many things to consider if it is to be managed efficiently and effectively.
“The first is that we expect Black Friday to become the ‘Black Friday period’ for some retailers, who will run campaigns over several days or even weeks. Also last year anticipation of Black Friday led to a slow start to the Christmas shopping season and panic-discounting by some, which impacted on profit margins. So the availability and rate of discounts will need to be rationalised this year for it to be sustainable.
“Finally it’s important to ensure that customers get the delivery experience they have been promised. Retailers should remember that many shoppers will be happy to wait longer than normal to have their orders delivered if it’s still several weeks until Christmas Day. This will help to ease the strain on fulfilment operations, should bottlenecks occur, but the most important thing is that customers know when to expect their delivery to arrive.”
Black Friday 2014 – An Experian snapshot
Research by Experian has also identified the two different consumer groups driving the growth in festive spending. Time pressed, middle income families, typically from suburban and more rural locations, were found to have been the driving force behind pre-Christmas sales in 2014, which saw over £810 million spent on Black Friday (28th November) alone. In contrast, shoppers on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day are more likely to be younger, urban consumers.
These findings have significant implications for retailers. Last year, the majority of shoppers in the early-season Black Friday sales period were found to be living outside the major city centres in more rural locations. As a result, added emphasis needs to be placed on logistical planning and delivery services. However, bargain-hunters on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day are likely to require more support and service in-store, and in-person.
Key demographic differences for each group are outlined below:
The Black Friday shopper – a profile
The Boxing Day & New Year’s Day Sales shopper
Head of PR, Experian Marketing Services
Ruder Finn for Experian Marketing Services
We are the leading global information services company, providing data and analytical tools to our clients around the world. We help businesses to manage credit risk, prevent fraud, target marketing offers and automate decision making. We also help people to check their credit report and credit score, and protect against identity theft. In 2015, we were named by Forbes magazine as one of the ‘World’s Most Innovative Companies’.
We employ approximately 17,000 people in 38 countries and our corporate headquarters are in Dublin, Ireland, with operational headquarters in Nottingham, UK; California, US; and São Paulo, Brazil.
Experian plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index. Total revenue for the year ended March 31, 2015, was US$4.8 billion.
IMRG (Interactive Media in Retail Group) is the UK’s industry association for e-retail. Formed in 1990, IMRG is setting and maintaining pragmatic and robust e-retail standards to enable fast-track industry growth, and facilitates its community of members with practical help, information, tools, guidance and networking. The strength of IMRG is the collective and cooperative power of its members.
For more information, visit http://www.imrg.org