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Black Friday: the build up


As we hurtle towards the end of the year everyone is talking about Black Friday 2016. This retail event has changed a lot in its short life this side of the pond, and we know it will continue to change as strategies from both manufacturers and retailers evolve from the learning's of previous years.

In 2015, not all retailers participated directly whilst some ran extended related events, trying to secure the customer earlier and spread the sales over a longer period of time. This made sense when you consider the volume of web traffic and the challenges this caused the year before.

Despite the changes in promotion and participation strategies, the 2015 results were still positive for Black Friday week itself with total sales up +8% in value and +6% in volume versus 2014. Week-On-Week value sales grew +65% and volume +31%. 

Black Friday 2015 also saw a change in shopping behaviour compared to the previous year; we tracked a higher level of online sales with an increase of +21% in volume and value year on year. Will we see a further increase in online penetration this year?

In 2015, TV’s were again a popular product, with a more than doubling in sales for the 43-50 inch screen sizes year on year. However, some of the best performing areas for growth were in stationery products with an amazing +300% Year-On-Year increase on crayons as a particular example.

In summary, 2015 definitely showed a change in how Black Friday was marketed by retailers and shopped by consumers.   .

 What will we see in 2016; can Black Friday continue to grow? What will the key trends be, and how much of the market will be transacted online? Will Black Friday still have the importance of previous years and what will the impact be on December trading?  How do consumers make their buying decisions, and how much are these decisions influenced by promotions?

To help understand the answers to these and others. We've combined our detailed point-of-sales tracking data with online pricing intelligence and consumer survey data to help you understand Black Friday 2016 and support your plan for next year. Find out more here.

* GfK point of sales tracking data, UK market. All figures are based on GfK’s weekly leader panel, growths are comparing YoY (Year-on-Year) movement of Week 48 2015 vs. Week 48 2014 (Dates 22.11.15 - 28.11.15 vs. 23.11.14 - 29.11.14) which includes Black Friday. Week-on-Week (WoW) comparisons refer to Week 48 2015 vs. Week 47 2015 (Dates 22.11.15 - 28.11.15 vs. 15.11.15 – 21.11.15). All figures are in value unless otherwise stated.