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Published
Nov 26, 2021
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Black Friday's big! Close to £9bn spend expected this year - reports

Published
Nov 26, 2021

Predictions are all pointing in one direction: this year’s Black Friday spending in the UK is lining up to be one of the biggest (and most important) yet for the start of the Golden Quarter.


Photo: Nigel Taylor


Black Friday spending is expected to hit a new record, coming close to £9 billion, despite fewer transactions this time around.

Analysts at PwC predict £8.7 billion will be spent, up from £7.8 billion in 2019 and about twice as much as last year when the UK was in lockdown.

It also predicts 60% of adults will have made purchases the end of Friday, with the average spend reaching £280 per person.

And this comes despite some major retailers, including M&S and Next, opting not to take part in this year’s shopping bonanza.

Meanwhile, Barclaycard, which processes £1 in every £3 spent on credit and debit cards in the UK, said that between midnight and 09:00 GMT, transactions had increased by 21.4% compared with Black Friday last year, when Covid restrictions hit sales. They were also 5.4% higher than in 2019.

According to retail financier Klarna, trainers particularly those from Nike and Adidas, have been high on Black Friday wishlists, joining Airpods and games consoles and fragrances.The latter sees Dior Sauvage, Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium, Mugler Alien, Paco Rabanne 1 Million and Olympea high on beauty wishlists.

Back to PwC’s research of 2,000 consumers, the survey being conducted by OnePoll, technology, clothing, and beauty items are the most sought-after Black Friday bargains, with 32% of consumers choosing to both browse and shop mostly online for good deals.

Its survey also found that 11% of Britons were planning to spend significantly more during the Black Friday sales period than they did last year.  And 15% of consumers are planning to use the annual sales event to make the bulk of their Christmas shopping purchases. 

Looking to save money on gifts was the primary driver 51% of Black Friday shoppers, particularly for consumers aged 55-64. However getting hold of must have items before Christmas was a key driver for those aged 18-24. 

While Black Friday bargain hunters are more than happy to wait for the best deals, 26% of the 2,000 consumers surveyed claim reports of supply chain issues and stock availability have impacted their Christmas shopping plans this year.  This rises to 45% among 18-24 year-olds.  

A quarter of consumers (24%) claim that they have already completed the bulk of their Christmas shopping, with 28% claiming they shop early to spread the cost of Christmas, and 27% shopping early to secure the gifts they really want this year. 

Meanwhile, 28% of consumers will shop nearer Christmas, with 16% planning to grab last minute Christmas bargains. Men were most likely to leave Christmas shopping to the last minute, with one in five choosing to leave their shopping to the days before Christmas. 

Recent coverage of environmental issues has altered shopping attitudes of around a third of consumers this year, according to the research. Some 54% of environmentally aware consumers claim they will only shop from brands or companies that have a good ethical and environmental practices. Men and young consumers (18–24-year-olds) were mostly likely to consider the environmental reputation of the retailers they were purchasing from. 

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