Black Friday spending continues to go from strength-to-strength, but how can brands keep ahead of the competition? Amazon expert Jérôme de Guigné offers some great tips.
Black Friday is the festival of consumer spending which takes place the Friday immediately after Thanksgiving each year — in 2019’s case, on the 29th November — that shoppers use to take advantage of fantastic one-off cut-price deals on products.
Black Friday spending reaches incredible heights
Total Black Friday spending in the US in 2018 amounted to an astounding $59.6 billion .
66 million US adults shopped on Black Friday 2018 , and 44 per cent of Americans are expected to use Black Friday 2019 as an opportunity to snap up products at low prices  as part of the $1.1 trillion Deloitte predicts the US will spend this holiday season .
Black Friday popular beyond the US
While Singles Day is now spreading well beyond the borders of China and South East Asia to become an international annual shopping day, Black Friday has already established itself outside of the USA.
The UK is a great example, with British shoppers spending £1.49 billion online on Black Friday 2018 compared to £1.39 billion the previous year .
Moreover, its popularity in the UK is growing. 62 per cent of people are likely to take part in Black Friday 2019, compared to 36 per cent last year .
Online sales beginning to dominate Black Friday
Black Friday has traditionally been associated with ‘bricks-and-mortar’ physical stores and people queuing up in the cold from the small hours of the morning to beat the crowds to the best deals.
Hardly surprisingly, in recent years, people have increasingly opted to do their Black Friday shopping online, with ShopperTrak reporting a 1.7 per cent decline in US physical store traffic (or footfall) on Black Friday 2018 vs 2017.
Black Friday 2018 brought in $6.2 billion in online sales, representing huge growth of 23.6 per cent vs 2017 .
It’s not necessarily that there are always better deals to be found online, it’s that shopping online is so convenient. If you can do all your Black Friday shopping online from the comfort of your own home or warm bed via your smartphone or tablet (over a third of last year’s Black Friday shopping was on mobile), then why not?
Shoppers love Amazon on Black Friday
Amazon enjoyed a 26 per cent share of the Black Friday market in 2018 — an increase of 3 per cent vs 2017 — and the company said that Black Friday even outperformed its own Prime Day .
How can brands use Amazon deal options to stand out on Black Friday?
As you may be aware, Amazon Vendor is the platform’s B2B2C sales model. Unlike selling on Amazon marketplace — where brands sell direct to the consumer — vendors work with the Amazon retail team on a wholesale basis, whereby Amazon buys stock from the brand and sells the products like an ordinary dealer.
There are four deal options available to vendors on Amazon:
- Lightning deals
- Best deals
- Price discounts
Lightning deals (LD) have always been the ‘Rolls Royce’ and best-known of the deal options Amazon offers, giving brands high visibility and full-on attention from customers for a limited time only.
But, despite it being the most-viewed deals page, the problem is that it has been too successful for its own good. You’re up against too much competition, and there is always the danger that you will be outbid and have your precious slot taken away from you by another product at the last minute.
In both cases, you need to have your offer up and ready to go two-to-four weeks in advance of Black Friday (or any other shopping day or date you’re aiming for) for them to really work out for the best.
Best deals and vouchers both offer very good potential returns on investment because you don’t have to discount as much as you do for lightning deals, and you can promote them through your own advertising campaigns or on social media.
Best deals can also run for longer — up to a fortnight — so you get more opportunity to create results.
Vouchers are great because they get highlighted on the voucher page but also benefit from high visibility when shoppers are researching products. They are a very efficient way to get your products promoted and looked at, while also boosting your conversions.
In conclusion — the importance of standing out on Amazon
Few would bet against Amazon once again being hugely popular with shoppers on Black Friday 2019, and the competition among brands looking to make the most of it being fierce.
It’s therefore crucial for brands to use deals — as outlined above — to help make themselves stand out and win big on what is one of the year’s most important and potentially lucrative consumer shopping days.
Watch out in the coming days for our article on how brands can make the most of Cyber Monday.
This article was written by Jérôme de Guigné (Founder and Managing Director of e-Comas), eBusiness Institute Collaborator and Amazon Expert.
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