As Black Friday sales get underway, online and bricks-and-mortar retailers are competing strongly for shopper attention
Yes, it’s an American tradition, but Black Friday sales have recently spread across the world, with South Africa being no exception. Last year local retailers participated in large numbers and 2016 seems to be heading for an even greater level of participation as some businesses run week-long sales that began on Monday.
Black Friday happens this Friday (25th) and both online and bricks-and-mortar outlets are competing strongly to get shopper attention. Electronics chain Hi-Fi Corporation, for example, says it will be offering ‘up to 80% off’ on selected goods. Similarly, online retailer Takealot is offering discounts of 60-80%.
Speaking to the website ‘Times Live’, Takealot’s Chief Marketing Officer, Julie-Ann Walsh, said that last year's sale showed growth of more than 200% over 2014. She assured customers that the website would be able to deal with the surge in customer demand on Friday.
Among those who are offering discount deals throughout the week are Makro, Game and Bidorbuy. The latter says it is running a Black Friday sale from Monday (21st) to Sunday (27th) and is following this up with a Cyber Monday sale that will run for the following week.
Some retailers are arguably being more inventive than others. The Foschini Group (TFG), for example, has a promotion in which customers can upload a selfie of their most ‘amped up face’ to a mobi-site, where their expression will be scored. If a customer scores higher than 60%, they receive vouchers valued at up to R300 which can be redeemed during the Black Friday sale.
Black Friday retailing have become more frenzied than ever in recent years and spread to countries such as Canada, Britain and Nigeria. Competition for shoppers’ money has become tougher too, with some industry observers calling it the “most important event of the year for [American] marketers”.