Close
 

US and UK retailers brace for Black Friday

  • News
  • November 26, 2015
  • Sarah Dunn
US and UK retailers brace for Black Friday
Image credit: The Times

Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving in the US, and signals the start of the Christmas shopping season. Investopedia says the reference to “black” is not intended to be sinister, but instead refers to the day’s profitability for retailers, who would traditionally see the surge in sales push their margins back into the black as customers attracted by deep discounts shopped until they dropped.

The day is a major sale event. US promotional website Black Friday, which aggregates Black Friday deals, has estimated that total sales numbers will eclipse $80 billion, with well over 300 million people shopping.

In recent years, Black Friday has also acquired an ecommerce-era counterpart, Cyber Monday. Cate Bryant runs a website aggregating deals for a similar Kiwi one-day event called Click Monday, which this year occurred on November 22.

Bryant says the sale generated over 100,000 user sessions during the 24 hours the sale ran. She reports that some participating retailers have called it their biggest online sales day ever.

The sales tactics used by US retailers on Black Friday have been known to cause outrageous behaviour. Every terrible event mentioned in the above list has really happened, most more than once, but garden-variety pushing and shoving is much more common as customers fight to retain their spots in overnight queues and race to grab “door-crasher” sale items.

A website called Black Friday Death Count has attributed seven deaths and 98 injuries since 2006 to the event. For a little glimpse of the worst of humanity, here's a compliation of Black Friday stampedes.

The UK isn’t immune from Black Friday psychosis. According to the BBC, police were called to seven different Tesco supermarkets in Manchester during Black Friday last year. The police described the scenes in store, which involved three arrests and a woman hit by a falling television, as “totally predictable” and signalled diappointment at Tesco’s shop security. Reetailers also needed police assistance at Dundee, Glasgow, Cardiff and London.

British booksellers have this year rebelled against the chaotic day,  which this year is expected to push consumer spending to £1.07 billion. The Booksellers Association has encouraged its members to host a ‘Civilised Saturday’ on November 28 – it suggests booksellers could serve bubbly and cake while playing classical music.

Lesslie Oliver from The Bookworm in Selkirk spoke about to The Bookseller: "Last year Black Friday was all a little bit bonkers, wasn't it? I don't think the Black Friday proposition - everything sold at a huge discount - is really the right proposition for books and book lovers. I think Civilised Saturday works much better for bookshops and our customers. I think it is a lovely idea."

US outdoor gear retailer REI has also attracted attention for its anti-Black Friday backlash. Instead of holding a sale, all 143 REI stores will close on Black Friday in a campaign titled '#optoutside'. As part of their campaign, REI's staff will all spend a paid day enjoying nature with their families... at least, that's what they'll tell their supervisors.
 

​ ​

This is a community discussion forum. Comment is free but please respect our rules:

  1. Don’t be abusive or use sweary type words
  2. Don’t break the law: libel, slander and defamatory comments are forbidden
  3. Don’t resort to name-calling, mean-spiritedness, or slagging off
  4. Don’t pretend to be someone else.

If we find you doing these things, your comments will be edited without recourse and you may be asked to go away and reconsider your actions.
We respect the right to free speech and anonymous comments. Don’t abuse the privilege.

 

Global recognition for instore innovation

  • Design
  • June 20, 2019
  • Courtney Devereux
Global recognition for instore innovation

The Global Innovation Awards (GIA) program was created by the IHA and International Home + Housewares Show to foster innovation and excellence in home and housewares retailing throughout the world. This year saw 30 national winners from 29 countries. The competition is structured on a two-tier level, evaluating national and global retailers across the following metrics: Overall mission statement, vision and strategy, store design and layout, visual merchandising, displays and window displays, marketing, advertising and promotions, customer service and staff training, innovation.

Read more
 
 
News

Trends analysed at Chicago's International Home + Housewares Show

Each new year for retailers is another question mark in guessing what to present to consumers. Luckily in the world of retail, trade shows can ...

 
 
News

Shoptalk 2019: The city of lights delivers

Juanita Neville-Te Rito shares a sprinkle of retail magic from Las Vegas retail conference Shoptalk.

 

Social scoreboard

Zavy and The Register have worked together to create a scoreboard that compares how the top 25 traditional media advertising spenders in New Zealand have performed on social media over the past 30 days, updated in real time.

 
topics
Regional rollercoaster
What does retail look like in 2019 for ...
Concept to closet
Business coverage of New Zealand Fashion Week.
Town centres
A positive retail environment over the past 12 ...
Amazon Arrival
Keeping up with all things Amazon as it ...
The Retail Yearbook 2017
As we battle our way through the busiest ...
Hospitality enhancing retail
Some think food and integrated hospitality offerings will ...
The future is bright
We spoke with four retailers in their twenties ...
Spotlight on signage
At first glance, the humble in-store sign might ...
Red Awards 2016
The Red Awards for retail interior design celebrate ...
Auckland Unitary Plan
Auckland is changing. The Unitary Plan will decide ...
How to open a store
Sarah Dunn considers what it would take to ...
All things to all people
Kiwi retailers share their omnichannel strategies.
Rising stars
Retail's top young achievers.
Delivering on your promises
The sale isn't over until your item is ...
Retail in heartland New Zealand
Retailers keep the regions pumping, but how strong ...
Sisterhood
Women in retail help one another. We spoke ...
The changing face of retail
Shifting demographics are creating big changes in New ...
The retail yearbook
With the help of experts in the retail ...
Retail rogues
We put the spotlight on staff training. Jai ...
Here come the giants
Topshop has arrived in Auckland’s CBD, David Jones ...
From retail to e-tail
Ecommerce has become part of the way mainstream ...
Window shopping: A spotlight on social media
Sarah Dunn and Elly Strang look at how ...
Loyalty in the digital age
How are retailers maintaining loyalty? Sarah Dunn, Elly ...
The Innovators | In partnership with Spark Business
Technology is rapidly changing the retail industry as ...
 

Consumer confidence falls again, but still optimistic

  • News
  • June 20, 2019
  • Radio New Zealand
Consumer confidence falls again, but still optimistic

Consumers remain downbeat about the future of the economy, but are more upbeat about their own financial situations.

Read more
 
 

Automation will help retailers focus on customers

  • News
  • June 19, 2019
  • The Register team
Automation will help retailers focus on customers

More than 100 retailers have gathered at Freedom Furniture’s new Newmarket flagship to consider what the upcoming wave of automation technology offers for the industry. Speakers included Pier Smulders from Alibaba Group and Soul Machines’ Hilary O’Connor.

Read more
 

A guide to the four favourite business f***-ups I've made

  • Opinion
  • June 18, 2019
  • Wendy Thompson
A guide to the four favourite business f***-ups I've made

Wendy Thompson is the founder and CEO of the successful social media marketing agency Socialites, and has 16 years digital marketing experience in some of New Zealand's top advertising agencies. However. that doesn't mean she hasn't made her fair share of mistakes in her career. Here, in her typically colourful way, she shares four mistakes she's learnt from all her years in business – and the important lessons she learnt from them.

Read more
 
Next page
Results for
Topics
Jobs
About us.

The Register provides essential industry news and intelligence, updated daily. And the digital newsletter delivers the latest news to your inbox twice a week — for free!

©2009–2015 Tangible Media. All rights reserved.
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy policy.

Advertise
The Register

editor@theregister.co.nz

Content marketing/advertising? Email anita.hayhoe@icg.co.nz or call 022 639 3004

View Media Kit

}