Why Black Friday is now a key event for the IT and tech industry

Dominic Ashford, senior account manager at GfK, looks at how the sales period is giving the industry a shot in the arm.

 Black Friday continues to grow in significance to the IT market.

Week 48 in 2015 (November 22nd to 28th – which includes Black Friday) increased by five per cent in value compared to the same week in 2014.

This is particularly significant as the IT market registered year-on- year declines for most weeks in 2015. There was growth for both the online and offline sales channels, demonstrating the importance of this key promotional period to the entire market.

Furthermore, the value of IT products sold into the retail channel by distributors grew by an average seven per cent year-on-year in the five weeks leading up to week 48 and Black Friday, showing that it is key to the whole supply chain.

In terms of IT product groups, there were some key winners on Black Friday. The mobile computing market (which includes both laptops and computing tablets) saw year-on- year value growth of 23 per cent in week 48, making it the strongest week of the year for that specific product group.

The keyboard market was another area where Black Friday was particularly significant in 2015, with week 48 seeing the value of this market grow by 52 per cent compared to week 48 in 2014.

These two examples demonstrate that this sales period is key for products across the IT market in the UK.

Looking at the retail sector in particular, this year saw retailers taking differing approaches to Black Friday. Some didn’t participate, some promoted early and for longer, and some marketed without actually using the words ‘Black Friday’. Despite the differing approaches, consumers responded and based on the GfK Point of Sales Tracking weekly data, this Black Friday has been the biggest yet for consumer durables.

Total sales were up eight per cent in value and six per cent in volume year-on-year.

In 2014, Black Friday madness arrived in the UK, with some ugly scenes in stores and negative media. This year, learnings were applied and as a result the in-store shopping experience was more civilised, with orderly controlled queues forming outside some stores on Friday morning.

However, the real story in 2015 is that the majority of consumers avoided the in-store chaos of previous years and moved to shopping online.

Online sales outperformed the total market sales, with growth of 21 per cent in both value and volume year-on-year. With 33 per cent more value and 27 per cent more volume going through online, internet sales made up a whopping 75 per cent of the overall value increase for this Black Friday.

 Dominic Ashford is senior account manager at GfK.

Check Also

Three Reasons Ecommerce Merchants Should Monitor the Battle Between Amazon and Shopify

Derek O’Carroll, CEO of Brightpearl investigates the highly competitive world of ecommerce. The behind the …