Black Friday. It’s one of the biggest days of the year for UK and US businesses which rightly warps sales and marketing efforts around it. Shoppers expect great deals on Black Friday and so this day often sees scores of people head out on shopping sprees. We’ve all seen viral Black Friday pictures and videos of eager shoppers storming business premises but will the same be true this year? Evidence suggests that the nature of Black Friday has changed and will continue to change going forward. While it still remains a day where many people intend to part with some cash, it’s how and where they’re spending their money that matters.

Below, we’ll break down the marketing statistics that have come out of Black Fridays in recent years and offer advice for how businesses can capitalise on this event in the holiday season. 

How did Black Friday start? 

In the UK, ‘Black Friday’ wasn’t always associated with shopping deals. Instead, it has a far darker (pun intended) origin as a term coined by emergency services and the police. Black Friday used to be the last Friday before Christmas, where extra strain was expected to be put on hospitals and police officers due to the increase in office parties. 

Since around 2014 however, the UK’s Black Friday has become synonymous with the one in the US. As a result, every year it falls on the last Friday in November in line with Thanksgiving celebrations. This means the date can change slightly, so marketers and retailers need to plan ahead. Nowadays, Black Friday deals are not exclusive to one sector or industry. Instead, fashion, tech, beauty, appliances, toys, home entertainment, music businesses and more stand to benefit from running deals. Consumers therefore look to Black Friday as a way to save money in the run up to Christmas.  

Black Friday shopper trends 

As a full service digital marketing agency, we wouldn’t be us if we didn’t first look at what the data is telling us. Overall, we expect Black Friday 2023 to continue following the trend of greater consumer spending year on year. Money is tight for many people in the UK, and so finding Black Friday deals serves as an opportunity to make vital savings. There are other trends which reveal consumers’ preferences and behaviour. 

Digital focus

The businesses being searched for as we run up to Black Friday all either deal with technology products or exist primarily in a digital space. The top Black Friday searches in the UK as of November 10th are for Amazon, Argos, and Currys. Also, according to Semrush data, the term Black Friday has been searched more than 200,000 times in the first week of November.  

Social Media  

Black Friday typically follows other consumer trends we see throughout the year, including the products people want to buy and the brands they want to buy from. Many of these trends can be seen through social media. This is because, according to HubSpot’s State of Consumer Trends Report 2022, more than half of Gen Z consumers said they had used social media to discover new products. This has been estimated to rise to around one third of consumers in 2023. 

Mobile Traffic 

Off the back of social media being used as a way to find the best deals, mobile device users are expected to make up a large portion of ecommerce traffic. Last year, a study revealed that a massive 76% of e-commerce traffic in the week leading up to Black Friday came from mobile devices. This percentage only promises to increase, as the digitisation of consumers continues across the board. 

Black Friday marketing strategies 

On Black Friday, consumers often have a clear idea of what they want to buy. As such, they’ll likely to be looking for specific deals. This means marketers stand to see a high conversion rate for certain products, as people are actively searching for them. In combination with the 2023 consumer trends above, the following strategies will help your business make the most of the Black Friday period. 

Offer a range of deals 

Black Friday is not just a single day. Businesses typically run deals over the weekend and only stop at the end of the Monday, which is known as Cyber Monday. This gives you four days to run a variety of promotions and offers. Large online retailers like Amazon do this every year, as they have a massive catalogue of items that they can put discounts on. The result is that consumers are more likely to see a deal that appeals to them. You can even advertise which days certain types of products will be discounted to more accurately target certain consumers. 

Regular communication 

Consumers expect to see deals advertised around Black Friday. As a business, you therefore need to put out regular communications with both new and existing customers. Tactics such as early deals for loyal customers can help raise awareness while securing conversions at the same time. Harness the power of ‘word of mouth’ in advance of the big day to maximise user interaction. 

Social media marketing  

As discussed above, social media has taken the spotlight in recent years when it comes to brand awareness and consumer product research. These channels provide easy access to audiences using mobile devices. Deals that incorporate video content can be effective for use on social media. This marketing content can also be effective at converting as it shows users how a product works and what its benefits are. Brands also have the option of utilising influencer marketing as a bridge between themselves and established groups of consumers. 

Paid advertising  

Similarly, running ads on channels like Facebook and Instagram can be an effective Black Friday marketing strategy. The key benefit of paid ads is that they’re more likely to be noticed by consumers. This gets your message out there about the deals you are offering, and the benefits people stand to access. The ads can then be a vessel for upselling, which can be highly effective during Black Friday. When consumers see that your business offers long term value, as well as the bigger deals on the weekend, they could be converted to loyal customers.  

Stick to your values

Although Black Friday can seem like a whirlwind for your business, it’s important not to lose your character. After all, that will be why many people have chosen to buy from you in the first place. Emailers and newsletters are perfect for staying in touch with established customers and maintaining close relationships around Black Friday. Your deals can then incorporate your brand values to help you stand out from the sea of other businesses looking to capitalise on Black Friday. 

It may not be right for your business to run Black Friday deals at all depending on your values. If this is the case, be transparent on the reasons why you aren’t participating. Customers will respect you for sticking to your guns. 

What big brands are offering 

At this time, the range of Black Friday deals available are practically endless. That being said, we’ve done some research and put together some of our top picks from brand that have taken heed of everything we’ve talked about in this blog. These are: 

  • O2 offering up to £600 off selected devices. 
  • Very offering a range of discounts on a range of products, including Apple tech. 
  • Amazon offering up to 62% off tech, notably on high demand products such as air fryers. 
  • John Lewis discounts on appliances. 
  • Superdrug with up to 65% off on a range of beauty products. 

Looking at each of these examples, there is evidence of many of the recommended marketing strategies. For instance, the Superdrug Black Friday page has a bright yellow call to action section titled ‘Members Only Early Access’.  

Need a digital marketing partner? 

Deliver Media offers ongoing marketing support to our clients to make sure they don’t miss out on key dates throughout the year. We understand that many businesses deal in products and services that possess a high seasonality. We offer dynamic services to ensure our digital marketing solutions are tailored to the business and your goals. Get in touch today and we’ll schedule a free website audit to see how best we can help. The Deliver team is committed to getting results that propel our client’s businesses forward at a steady pace.

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