24 October 2023 – Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become important events in many shoppers’ diaries. A new survey suggests UK shoppers are planning to spend big during these discount events this year.
This year was tough for many small businesses. High inflation and rising borrowing costs made running a business financially challenging. The cost-of-living crisis has forced many consumers to tighten their purse strings too, to make ends meet.
Non-essential spending has gone down as many households adapt to the current financial situation. This has hit many small businesses, who are still recovering from the effects of the pandemic.
With Black Friday (24 November 2023) and Cyber Monday (27 November 2023) looming, many businesses will be hoping to make up for some of the lost income from the past months. While inflation has eased in recent months, many people are still struggling financially.
But a survey by Shopify shows that many UK shoppers plan to spend big during the sales events.
53% Of UK Consumers Save Money For Black Friday And Cyber Monday Events
With the cost-of-living crisis still continuing to make the lives of many Brits a struggle, a spending spree might not be at the forefront of their minds. Even if bargains are to be had.
However, a survey by Shopify of over 2,000 UK consumers and 1,000 UK small and medium businesses seems to suggest otherwise.
According to the data from the Black Friday Cyber Monday 2023 Report, 74% of UK shoppers have spent less on non-essentials in the past few months. Which will have had a big impact on many small businesses. However, the data also shows that UK consumers plan to spend big for the festive season.
This includes buying on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. More than half of the respondents (53%) said they have saved more money for these two sales events than in former years.
This bodes well for many small businesses who will be hoping to boost their profits towards the end of the year. 66% of UK consumers who responded to Shopify’s survey said they plan to spend the same amount or more than last year on this year’s Cyber Monday and Black Friday sales events.
Another piece of good news from the report is that 33% of shoppers in the UK said that shopping in physical shops is an important way to find new products for them. The importance of physical shops has also risen in the view of UK businesses.
76% said that they are as important or more important than in the previous year, which is up from 68% in 2022’s report. This seems to indicate that we haven’t reached the end of the high street yet.
While online shopping is seen as more important, only by a small margin with 39%. Shopping on social media platforms is becoming more popular, according to Shopify’s report. 32% said they are willing to buy products on Facebook.
The importance of selling on social media platforms is also not lost on business owners, with 80% saying they are as important or more important than last year.
AI Seen As Helpful When Shopping Online
Shopify’s report also looked at how technology affects shopping habits. 68% of shoppers said that artificial intelligence (AI) is helpful for finding new products or getting more information about a product they are interested in.
Other technology UK consumers are keen on are self-service checkouts, with 53% of respondents naming it as a favourite. Followed by the ability to shop on their mobile, which 44% have said they really like. Real-time order tracking is a firm favourite for 38% of shoppers.
Technology is also important for shoppers when trying to get value for money, with 38% using it for this purpose. 34% said that technology can make shopping more convenient and 26% said it helps them to make informed decisions.
So it’s no surprise that consumers in the UK prefer to shop with businesses who embed technology to improve the shopping experience of shoppers. 40% said they would buy more or spend more money with businesses who do.
It can also create loyalty, with 20% saying they would come back if embedded technology made their experience better.
The data from Shopify’s report clearly shows that UK shoppers are keen to take advantage of bargains on offer during Black Friday and Cyber Monday events. With many even saving up for it in the past months.
So we believe that small businesses are well advised to plan a Black Friday and/or Cyber Monday sales event. It’s a chance to boost profits during the Christmas shopping season.
But it’s important to do it right. Many companies offer Black Friday offers for a week, rather than just a day. While this might sound like it should appeal to customers, it doesn’t create an urgency.
And that’s what a one-day sale event is about. It appeals to people’s fear of missing out (FOMO). Consumers want a bargain, especially when times are tough, so they are more likely to buy, if they know that the discount is only available on one day.
Communication is also key. It’s important to let customers know that there are Black Friday or Cyber Monday offers. Emails, advertising in shop windows and on the website are all vital for a small business to draw in customers.