Although an American tradition, Black Friday is now a permanent date in the UK retail calendar. This year was no exception, with banks such as Barclaycard reporting sales volume increases of 7.1% between 25th November and 2nd December.
Many retailers will be pleased that neither Brexit nor the troubles in the retail market impacted Black Friday revenue. But who are the real winners?
YouGov data shows that department store John Lewis and online fashion retailer Boohoo performed especially well. John Lewis’ sales were up 9.5% over the 10 day period, demonstrated by a spike in current customer scores (whether someone has recently purchased from the brand) – scores increased by 8.3 points between the 29th November and this week.
Similarly Boohoo confirmed ‘record sales’ leading to a 2.6% increase in share prices. The brand’s marketing also focused on Cyber Monday, offering discounts for many days afterwards. Boohoo’s buzz scores (a net measure of whether consumers have heard anything positive or negative about the brand in the last fortnight) increased from +0.7 to +2.4 in the days immediately following Black Friday.
Advertising is still the main way that brands connect with consumers during this crowded and noisy period. YouGov data shows that 94% of Brits recall hearing or seeing advertisements promoting Black Friday or Cyber Monday with only 5% who don’t recall seeing any adverts. This number increases slightly among men yet decreases among women – 7% and 3% respectively - suggesting that the male market is potentially being neglected.
During the lead up to Black Friday, ad awareness scores (whether someone has seen or heard an advert broadcast by a company in the past two weeks) among men aged between 18 and 34 for key online retailers were low. BoohooMAN, Topman and Primark all had little or negative moment in their scores among this market.
One retailer that has identified this opportunity is ASOS, which enjoyed a 7.8 point increase in ad awareness scores leading up to Black Friday, and an 8.8 point increase afterwards.
Black Friday can be a crowded time and cutting through the noise in order to generate sales and profit can be difficult. However, highlighting neglected markets to advertise to can make all the difference to sales figures.
This article previously appeared in City A.M.