Online is the shopping channel of choice for the majority of consumers during the US holiday weekend, from the Black Friday sale starting today, to the Cyber Monday sale on Monday. An international survey of consumer spending habits by Oliver Wyman shows that most consumers plan to shop online, with either home delivery or instore pick-up.
However, the weekend shopping extravaganza comes at a cost to retailers. The research showed that three-quarters of Black Friday purchases cannibalise full-price sales, while retailers that ignore Black Friday could lose a huge volume of sales to competitors. The report says: “Retailers therefore need to focus their strategy on delivering Black Friday and Cyber Monday via multiple platforms – for example, with leaner operating costs, smarter purchasing decisions, attracting customers with products and shopping experiences they cannot get elsewhere, and high-margin add-on sales.”
The graph below shows how e-commerce is set to dominate spending patterns this weekend, particularly in the UK and Netherlands, where more than seven out of 10 consumers say they will make purchases online. The Swiss market has maintained more of a traditional connection with shopping instore, with 29 per cent of consumers saying they will purchase in person, and only 35 per cent planning to buy online.
Oliver Wyman's Black Friday survey also points out that many consumers participating in Black Friday and Cyber Monday require a discount of more than 50 per cent in order to make a purchase. The graph below shows that, overall, 47 per cent of consumers said they would make a purchase only for a discount of 50 per cent or more.
The survey also shows that electronics and apparel are the main categories of goods that shoppers are looking to buy during the sale. In the US, 71 per cent of consumers are looking to make an electronic or computer purchase closely followed by 65 per cent in the UK. In Switzerland, apparel wins out with 70 per cent of consumers planning on purchasing from that category with the Netherlands (49 per cent) and France (47 per cent).
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