Black Friday: After the Party, the Hangover...

Phew! Together with retailers all over the World, you will be breathing a sigh of relief now that Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2016 are behind us!

This is because the past weekend was the culmination of months of planning to ensure that your websites stayed up, your call centres were able to take the strain and your logistics partners were fully prepped for the deluge. Of course, it will not actually be over until all those parcels have been delivered and all the returns have been dealt with, so it is safe to assume that you will be busy for a little longer yet.

But while you won't have actual numbers for a few weeks, it would only be human for you to be already taking a mental stock of what these two momentous sales days actually meant for your business.

A big shopping party

Early indicators already suggest that the Black Friday weekend was one big shopping party, even bigger than 2015! And even if shoppers continued to shift spending online, with Tamara Gaffney of Adobe claiming Black Friday 2016 dethroned Cyber Monday as ‘largest online shopping day of the year’, in-store spending in the UK was still


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How to stop bargain hunters ruining your Holiday Sales

Now the clocks just changed, you are probably already fully focused on this year’s peak trading period, the almost non-stop 57 day Holiday Sales period including Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the January Sales.

But unless you work out now how you are going to get value from the inevitable bargain hunters your deep discounts will attract, you risk wasting most of the effort and money you invest. Yet there is hope. That is, if you get your bargain shoppers to bring you good clients, then you can save your Holiday Sales. Here is how.

It's going to be a big deal

Adobe has forecasted this year’s Holiday Sales will drive US$91bn in sales in the US with US$3bn on Black Friday alone. The same period is predicted to drive £24.3bn in the UK. However you look at it that is a big deal.

So as well as meeting with your IT team to make sure your site stays up, external courier companies to ensure parcels get delivered on-time and working out how to deal with all those inevitable returns, you will also be putting the final touches to your customer acquisition campaigns. You will


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Fashion: Avoiding a post-sales hangover this year

Here we go, then. Fashion’s annual binge, the summer sales. You’re going to sell more, to more people, faster than ever before. LET’S HAVE IT.

Obviously, though, there’ll be discounting. Something we don't usually like doing. And some of your customers will be deal-hunters, who probably won’t come back once the sales are over. But who cares? BRING IT ON.

And then the summer hangover will kick in. When the tumbleweed blows down those new collection aisles and the website stats tail off.

So, how do you avoid that post-sales hangover? You’ve already upped your game compared to the rest of retail. You hold special preview weeks for your best customers to add a sense of occasion (let’s see an electronics retailer try that!); you steadily mark-down throughout the duration of your sale to maximise margins and manage stock; you trickle-release new items into your sales to maintain momentum and ensure repeat purchase. You do sales better than anyone. But at the end of it all? Your head still throbs and your heart still sinks.

There is one way, though. It’s all about extracting more value from your customers, taking something back


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The Miracle Cure for Your Black Friday Hangover

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After The Party...The Hangover!

Well as parties go, this year’s Black Friday weekend was ‘one huge sales party’!

We are not going to bore you by repeating all the stats about how many billion dollars of sales were made, how many million parcels need to be delivered or what was the average response time for the Argos or Target website. Let’s suffice it to say that US$4.4bn spent online in the US and £1.1bn spent online in the UK is a big party in anyone’s vocabulary.

But like all good parties the morning after normally starts with a hangover as you try and piece together what happened the night before.  And the bigger the party...... the bigger the hangover.

If you are a retailer you will still be busy for a few days trying to get all those parcels out and working out how to deal with the inevitable returns. But there is a moment on the horizon you are dreading, in effect this moment is going to be the ‘mother of all your hangovers’.

That moment is going to be like someone throwing a jug of ice cold water over your poor


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Black Friday Sales: Getting the most out of the inevitable bargain hunters

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Sales exist for a good reason!

While clearing out last season’s left over stock frees up warehouse and display space and provides cash to reinvest in your business, the main reason you, as a retailer, sacrifice short term margins is in the hope that deep discounts will tempt good customers into your stores to begin a long term and profitable relationship. Of course everyone knows that sales also attract price sensitive bargain hunters with little notion of brand loyalty, but as long as there are enough good customers to compensate for the bad, sales make economic sense.

But that was how it used to be. Today we seem to have non-stop sales as imports such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Amazon Prime Day have joined the traditional January and end of season sales.  And who knows if the Chinese invention of Singleton’s Day will be the next excuse to discount to arrive on our shores! As well as more sales, we have also seen a frenzy of discounting as retailers compete to give away more and more margin with headline grabbing price reductions to cut through the noise from all the competing store sales.

What makes this


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