Black Friday is the biggest day of the year for shopping in America- the friday after Thanksgiving often marks the first day of the Christmas holiday shopping season- and is the one day with the biggest sales and discounts. Since the 1800s, 'Black Friday' has referred to many different things- originally it was used in conjunction with stock market crashes in New York. Eventually, in 2001, the term became used for what we know it today, until 2011, the biggest shopping day in America was the saturday before Christmas when there would be a huge rush, however the deals and bargains became a huge draw for Black Friday to step into the limelight as the biggest day of the year. Like most parts of American culture, slowly but surely, it has made its way across the Atlantic as we all grew green with jealousy of their bargains and wanted some of our own!  

This year, get your credit card ready for Friday 27th November- which isn't too far away now! As a business you need to get ready for the influx of business you will hopefully recieve on this day- in store and online! Online retailers have the benefit of customers not wanting to go to the shops when they know they will be chock-a-block with shoppers, and would prefer to recieve their discount from the comfort of their own homes. The videos of 2014's Black Friday, one of which you can watch below from ODN, may sway you more towards shopping online to avoid being trampled for a cheap telly. 

As you may have heard on the video, retailers were criticised last year for not being prepared for such a huge response to the day, and this year it is important for all retailers to see the opportunity of the day in terms of volume of sales, but also be prepared for such a volume of traffic on e-commerce sites. Nothing ruins potential sales like a slow site, or inadequate stock levels meaning by the time a customer gets through to checkout, you no longer have said product in stock. If you are a retailer, it is a great idea to plan in advance for the day, and not underestimate how vital it may be for your sales for the holiday period as a whole.

Retailers who are big enough to have online and instore options, especially with a 'Click & Collect' option will need to make sure that on the day, there is a seamless customer shopping experience- without the mass hysteria mocked on the News up and down the country last year. Capacity testing would be a good idea to make sure that the flawless experience wanted can be delivered to the consumer.

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In 2014, it was reported by IMRG consumers spent £810 millon online, so if you're an online business this year, it will be well worth making sure you have promoted the day as much as you can, give a discount code on every platform you can, and then be prepared for increased sales, and make sure you're able to fulfil the orders quickly, from stock levels to organising your mail so that you're able to send your items quickly. It has been reported that 3/4 of small businesses will miss out on the increased sales because they are not planning to take part. Judging from the sales figures from 2014, and the fact 2015 is tipped to top these figures, it would be a shame for people to miss out on such an event! If the business is prepared, has a good amount of stock, and is prepared to distribute the parcels, the day could be a great first day of the Christmas orders to make some money even before the festive period gets into full swing!

If you're worried your website isn't up to the job of dealing with Black Friday, give us a call, we'd be happy to help your business to reach it's potential!