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New study: this year's Black Friday set to be the busiest yet

A new study has suggested that this year’s Black Friday on 28 November could be the busiest and most successful yet for retailers.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

New study: this year's Black Friday set to be the busiest yet

According to new research by eDigitalResearch and IORMA, 72% of the 1,000 UK consumers surveyed said they had heard of the shopping term Black Friday. Furthermore, almost one quarter said that they had bought something on Black Friday in the past.

With knowledge of the day ever increasing amongst UK consumers, the study suggests that the 2014 event could become the busiest and most successful Black Friday yet, with more retailers looking to invest in the discount day.

When asked if retailer promotions ever influenced their online Christmas purchases, over a third of consumers said that they had been encouraged to buy particular items due to offers and deals in the past.

Chris Russell, joint chief executive at eDigitalResearch and IORMA board advisor, said: “Up until a few years ago, very few of us had even heard of the term Black Friday. Now, almost three quarters of UK consumers know what the term is – although there is still understandably confusion for some – with many actively anticipating the day to arrive.

“The challenge for retailers will be capitalise on the opportunity as more and more shoppers look to grab a bargain. The entire retail experience and customer journey – from marketing to logistics – needs to be exceptional, especially as more of the market look to cash in on Black Friday.”

In comparison, only 45% of consumers surveyed said they had heard of the term Cyber Monday. Falling on 1 December this year, this is the day that retailers traditionally see a spike in online orders. Around one in three consumers expect to make the majority of their Christmas purchases this year on, or around, Cyber Monday, marking the need for retailers to brace themselves for an onslaught of site visitors and online orders.

John Andrews, chairman and chief executive of IORMA, added: ”The views expressed by UK consumers in this research clearly illustrate that what was once a traditional event originating in one country can very quickly now migrate in the global online borderless world, to markets in other countries. In this instance what was originally a US Thanksgiving holiday related shopping event has now become recognised in the UK too, and appreciated by UK consumers and UK retailers alike.

”Other similar occasions such as China's online retail giant Alibaba Singles’ Day look set to further this trend, with Alibaba stating that it has achieved $9.3 billion in sales from its annual Singles' Day shopping event for Chinese consumers alone. It generated 278 million orders - 43% of which were placed on mobile devices.  It is the world's biggest online retail sales day.”

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