How Gift Shops can make Black Friday work

Polly Barnfield OBE, CEO of Maybe*, explains how gift shops can make Black Friday work for them.

Statistics have shown the influence that Black Friday can have on consumer spending power in the UK. Over the Black Friday weekend last year alone, Britons were calculated to have spent around £9.42 billion. Although online sales accounted for 61.49% of this figure, it still means that more than £3.5 billion was spent in physical stores. And yet, despite its online dominance, few offline retailers are capitalising on the opportunity as well as they could to maximise increased footfall and increase interest from customers looking to shop.

Stats from social media specialists, Maybe* showed that although 66% of Black Friday shoppers did so online, 16.7% shopped offline and 17.2% shopped both online and offline. Interestingly, over half of those (55.5%) made a spontaneous purchase and 30.8% said they wouldn’t have made their purchase if hadn’t been Black Friday.

So, how can gift shops use social media to build momentum towards this year’s Black Friday weekend?

  1. Start your conversation now and build it towards Black Friday – build momentum with regular posts, increase your social media activity and conversation in the week running up to Black Friday.
  2. Even though Black Friday is predominantly an online event, use your social media to highlight individual items that you have in stock that you will be discounting or making offers on. Make those items the starts of your social media for the week.
  3. Maximise the additional footfall you might receive in the week up to Black Friday by teaming up with other local retailers to highlight and direct them to, for example, Christmas grottos or local cafes nearby to provide reasons for people to come to your high street.
  4. Clearly communicate your opening hours to help reduce customer friction. Perhaps consider extending your Black Friday activities from more than just the day itself across the whole of the weekend that follows.
  5. There may be other ways to offer customers the best Black Friday deal with our drastically cutting prices. Leverage the trend towards buying pre-loved, pre-used goods arising out of the cost-of-living crisis to offer more sustainable choices. Are there ways you could offer sustainable discounts perhaps by focusing on pre-loved products, eg. jewellery?

While these steps will hopefully help your gift business have a Black Friday to remember, don’t forget that now more than ever, the key to being a success on social media is building relationships, with customers, colleagues and neighbours – old and new. While not to forget, having fun and making social work for you and your brand.

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