Black Friday is coming! On the 24th November millions will hit the shops in search of Christmas presents and the best deals.
We’ve looked at what you might expect to see this year, what stores are taking part and how Black Friday has changed over time in the U.K.
Not more than a few years ago Black Friday was almost exclusively a discount day offered in the United States, but in 2010 Amazon decided to trial the day in the U.K by offering some low-level discounts to British shoppers to test the market.
In 2013, discounts ramped up with ASDA (owned by US retailing giant Walmart) clocking onto the term and offering huge discount deals on TV’s and electric goods. This led to 2014 being a bumper year for Black Friday, with many large retailers getting involved. Looking at Google trends data we’re able to see the huge peak in searches around the term in 2014, when you might say that Black Friday in the UK was officially ‘launched’.
'Black Friday' search term - Data for the past 5 years
So, what are this year’s trends and which stores are taking part?
Well pretty much all the major retailers and department stores, including John Lewis, M&S, Argos, Amazon, Currys PC World and Debenhams, just to name a few.
Stores which haven’t taken part in Black Friday in previous years include Primark, Ikea, Selfridges and, surprisingly, ASDA themselves for the past two years.
This is due to a variety of different reasons, for some it might ‘cheapen’ the image and brand of the store, others offer relatively cheap products anyway and some received such bad publicity from running Black Friday deals previously, namely Asda, with shoppers fighting in-store, that they’ve steered clear for the past few years. It will certainly be interesting to see what these stores plan to do this year, especially with rumours that ASDA may decide to take part once more.
Cyber Monday is also now a key player in the discount shopping calendar, with even more consumers shopping online in the middle of the night than ever before.
Looking at the Google trends data, Cyber Monday interest is already peaking with people searching for the term as early as mid-September and follows a more temperamental up and down trajectory than the 'Black Friday' search term which starts to peak in September, but continues to be low and steady before that.
'Cyber Monday' search term - Data for the past 12 months
'Black Friday' search term - Data for the past 12 months
The stats for Cyber Monday last year are very different from this, with little interest before the day, suggesting that this year might be a bumper year for Cyber Monday.
Watch this space after Black Friday and Cyber Monday for our review of the trends and see if our Cyber Monday predictions are correct!