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If there's one thing consumers love when shopping for the Christmas holidays it's a good deal. Retailers have obviously caught on to this fact and present consumers with a plethora of discounts and deals as they compete for sales during their most important period of the year.
Sales and discounts in the lead up to Christmas have become key dates in many shoppers' calendars.
In this blog, we take a look at some of the most important dates in retail during the Christmas period.
For many shoppers, Black Friday represents the start of the Christmas shopping season. The retail tradition of Black Friday originated in the US, where it falls on the day after Thanksgiving. Soon enough though, Black Friday made the trip across the pond and has been at the forefront of the thoughts of bargain-hunting consumers ever since.
In November 2018, 14.5 million consumers searched for Black Friday which led to UK consumers spending more than £2.44 billion. Interestingly, 51% of those searches originated from a mobile device (per Google ads), highlighting a change in consumers shopping habits in recent years and a need for mobile-first sales channels.
A host of retailers participate in the Black Friday sales with several heavy-hitters, including Argos, John Lewis, and Currys at the forefront of price slashes. Last year we also saw service providers such as Sky, EE, and even British Airways join the Black Friday melee.
Some online retailers, such as Amazon, are known for making an entire week out of the event.
Black Friday is swiftly followed by Cyber Monday; the premise of which is to give pure-play businesses an event to match the brick-and-mortar frenzy served up by Black Friday. Like Black Friday, the Cyber Monday sales originated in the US and has steadily been adopted by the UK and a host of other countries ever since.
Cyber Monday attracts significantly less online searches than Black Friday, with just 734,000 UK searches in November 2018, and 58% of those searches come from mobile devices (per Google Ads). This 95% decrease in search volume could be attributed to the fact that people associate Black Friday as leading up to Cyber Monday with many online sales being derived from offers that have already been available within the store.
Quite often consumers will find that some deals are online exclusives for Cyber Monday, and likewise some deals will be in-store exclusives for Black Friday. Make sure your marketing messages are clear!
Another sales event that originated in the US and was founded by American Express. The event has taken off in the UK ever since the campaign launched in 2013. The Small Business Saturday campaign focuses on highlighting small businesses and encouraging consumers to shop with them.
Last year, Small Business Saturday recorded it's most successful day ever with consumers spending £812 million in small businesses across the country. Furthermore, the event earned over 100,000,000 impressions on social media and maintaining a presence in Twitters top 5 UK trends throughout the day whilst also recording over 20,000 Google searches during the holiday period (per Google Ads).
Similar to Cyber Monday, Green Monday was first coined by eBay in 2007 upon recognising it as the best day of sales during December and usually the busiest day of online shopping before Christmas. It's thought that Green Monday has come to prominence due to a host of shoppers realising that it nearly Christmas and they do in fact need to get a move on to make sure their last-minute gifts that will still be delivered on time!
'Green Monday' receives just under 2,500 searches in the UK during the holiday period (per Google Ads), indicating that it is very much a business-driven sale term; unknown by the majority of the general public, and only used by businesses to shape strategy during the holiday period.
Free Shipping Day is an annual event falling in mid-December targeting those of us that like to live 'life on the edge' and finish up their online Christmas shopping with just 10 days to go before Christmas Eve. Free Shipping Day has attracted a host of major retailers with some of last years including names such as Amazon, Forever 21, Gap and Ralph Lauren.
Last year, Free Shipping Day attracted more than 28,000 Google searches in the UK during the festive period (per Google Ads), highlighting its popularity with last-minute shoppers. If you fall into the category of last-minute Christmas shoppers, the realisation that you are far from alone should be reassuring!
Whilst not strictly a sale in itself, it's interesting to note that Christmas Day attracts more mobile searches for products than any other day during the festive calendar.
This is perhaps fuelled by consumers nursing the inevitable post-Christmas dinner food baby whilst planning to spend their Christmas money as soon as the Boxing Day sales begin. Boxing Day represents the biggest day of retail both online and offline with consumers burning through their Christmas money.
Key dates in retail for the Christmas period stretch across November and December and are invariably met with a frenzy of consumers looking for a steal of a deal to present to their loved ones for Christmas.
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