Everything you need to know about Black Friday 2019

The four-day global shopping event known as Cyber Week, starting with Black Friday on November 29 and ending with Cyber Monday on December 2, is just around the corner, so we gathered up all the relevant stats and statements from industry experts and analysts to help you get a handle on what to expect from the event this year.

When will the shopping frenzy begin?

Black Friday traditionally occurs on the Friday after the US holiday of Thanksgiving, and Cyber Monday takes place three days later. Thanksgiving, however, is a moving target, landing on the fourth Thursday in November, and this year, that puts it less than a month before Christmas. With more retailers than ever participating in Black Friday, many businesses have chosen to start their discounting early.

EBay kicked off its Black Friday sales at midday on Monday, November 25, with discounts and free shipping for items like Fitbits, Oral B electric toothbrushes and Parlux hairdryers exclusively for its Plus members, while adult online retailer Lovehoney started its sales a whole nine days early on November 20.

Amazon Australia gave Prime members a ‘sneak peek’ at some of its sale items on Monday, November 25, but won’t make them available for purchase until Thursday, November 28.

As many retail experts have noted, Cyber Week has shifted the traditional shape of peak period in Australia. Last year, businesses saw a 46 per cent rise in revenue in November when compared to the average sales of any other month, nearly on par with December, which saw a 48 per cent rise, according to Square.

Retail businesses also experienced much heavier weekend trade, which increased through the month of November and culminated with the biggest national retail trading day on Saturday, December 1.

Who will shop the sales?

According to a YouGov survey commissioned by Vend, over 12 million Australians plan to shop local on Black Friday this year. The survey shows that 72 per cent of millennials are likely to support local independent retailers, followed by 64 per cent of Gen X and 55 per cent of Baby Boomers, with over half of the age group stating that they would check out independents alongside the typical high street giants.

Vend also noted that 2018 sales saw a significant jump in online retail, accounting for 6.6 percent of total sales during November, followed by a December decline.

EBay is predicting it will receive more than 2.6 million visits on Black Friday, making it the company’s busiest shopping day for the first time ever. Over 1.9 million of these visits are expected to be on mobile devices. The online marketplace expects a double-digit growth rate in Black Friday spending compared to 2018.

How much will they spend?

This is the million-dollar (or should we say, billion-dollar) question.

Finder.com.au has predicted Australian shoppers will spend $3.9 billion in the entire month of November this year, which includes other sales events, such as Singles Day and Click Frenzy.

This compares to the US$87 billion Finder expects shoppers to spend on Black Friday in the US, and the £4.3 billion UK shoppers will spend on promotional sales in the Q4 period, according to GlobalData.

According to PayPal’s 2019 report on mobile commerce, Black Friday is now the third most popular sales period in Australia, after Boxing Day and EOFY sales.

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