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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : November 02, 2015

Queues and in-store squabbles put off Black Friday shoppers this year

The turn-out for Black Friday and Cyber Monday this year may not be a big as it was last year, thanks to memories of in-store fighting and crashing websites, according to research conducted by predictive analytics firm Blue Yonder.

by Helen Leggatt

A nationwide survey in the U.S. of 2,000 shoppers appears to suggest that fewer consumers will get their shopping done on the two biggest retail days of the year this year. When it comes to Black Friday, a third said they found the shops too busy in 2014, or the queues too long, while a fifth have been put off by TV and online footage of bad behavior and in-store squabbles.

Cyber Monday came with its own set of problems - slow-loading websites, crashes and product unavailability.

"It is clear that a careful approach to Black Friday and Cyber Monday by retailers is needed," says Markus Juhr-De Benedetti, chief revenue officer at Blue Yonder. "Bad experiences can put customers off brands, especially if they leave empty handed due to a product selling out too quickly or when experiencing website problems, and this is reflected in the fact that more shoppers will be avoiding Black Friday and Cyber Monday this year."

The research also found that retailers will need a strategy in place to manage returns and that the sheer number of returns could damage income from the big sales days. Last year, almost a quarter of shoppers that purchased an item said they later felt they did not need it, or wish they hadn't bought it, or returned it at a later date.

It's not just retailers that have strategies. The research found that three-quarters of Black Friday and Cyber Monday shoppers admitted to having a strategy in place in order to get the best bargains. Twenty-one percent visited stores in advance to find out where the product they wanted was located, 17% worked in a team to hunt down the products they were after and 21% arrived at stores early to get a good place in the queue. In terms of Cyber Monday, 40% checked their Internet connection to a retailer in advance.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: Black Friday, Cyber Monday, ecommerce, holiday 2015, retail

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