The last quarter of the year has a big impact on the overall success of our trading year. Although in the past the big impact on sales would be around the Christmas and New Year period the biggest sale of the year has in fact already happened. Black Friday (BF) a shopping tradition that began in the US has spread all over the world and became one of the most significant sale point of the year. The E-Square Group is not an exception as almost all our members participate in BF promotions and, if not, they recognize its importance. Several E-Square Group members have been active in BF promotions for several years and on average all have participated for the past 2-3 years. This shows how quickly it has exceeded in importance over the other major holidays. The impact of sales for one day can be compared to the sales volume of three days or even more.
Overall Black Friday is increasing sales across all product categories depending on the promotions and the strength of the offers, however most of our members agreed, that categories like CE and small products for spontaneous shopping sell much better than, for example, white goods. This emphasizes the importance of a good BF strategy, not only in the form of offers and advertisement but also in form of store traffic. A successful BF strategy, can increase the sales in all product categories, not only the promoted ones.
The length of the BF promotions varies across all E-Square members, from a few days to more than a week showing that ‘Black Friday’ has now grown in to a ‘Black Weekend’ or even ‘Black Week’.
Most retailers cannot imagine not participating in BF promotions, as, in their view, they no longer have the choice. The average consumer expects some sort promotional pricing across all categories. The impact of not participating can be disastrous not only for sales but also in the retailers’ brand awareness amongst end consumers. The few members who do not participate at BF still recognize its importance, as it is being promoted by their competitors and know that someday soon, they will be forced to participate.
The question is do the retailers or consumers drive this phenomenon? Does this mean that the power of consumers is nowadays so big, that an American holiday is the most important sale day in Europe? We think the answer is yes…..