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Black Friday is no longer a standalone retail event for UK consumers

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Four in five (81%) of Brits think they can find good sales and promotions all year round, suggesting that Black Friday is no longer a standalone retail event for UK consumers – according to new research from the7stars, the UK’s largest independent media agency.

The findings come from the most recent wave of The QT, a consumer confidence and attitude tracking study conducted on a quarterly basis by the7stars. The results show that perhaps in the year that Amazon announce a fortnight of deals for what was originally a single day of sales, Black Friday really has started to lose its allure. Despite the event growing in size and scale, only 13% claim to do their Christmas shopping on Black Friday, a figure largely unchanged from two years ago (10%).

Similarly, respondents alluded to the overwhelming and slightly off-putting nature of Black Friday sales – with almost half (47%) claiming they get lost in the sea of promotions and often don’t know where to start.

Black Friday was, however, found to be more accepted amongst younger consumers, with 35% of 18-24s claiming to hold off buying things until the event, compared with only 5% of the 65+ group. Similarly, a quarter of this group say they prefer it to the post-Christmas sales, compared with only 3% of the older generation.

The story is still one of scepticism though, as even within the 25-35 cohort, 18% claim to believe that if an item is reduced on Black Friday then it’s not worth buying in the first place.

Frances Revel of the7stars said: “Black Friday is often referred to as the biggest shopping day of the year, but it’s clear from our research that sentiment is changing and the ‘magic’ of previous years is really starting to wear off. Instead of being seen as a one-off chance to find lots of amazing deals, the Black Friday marketing period is now considered confusing to consumers; a largely American tradition that makes little sense here in the UK, and a practice that is encouraging already troubled retailers here to engage in a ‘race to the bottom’”.

“In an insecure political climate, with the value of the £ fairly volatile, this might be the first year we see the tides begin turn on Black Friday from both a shopper and retailer perspective.”




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