A report from Experian and IMRG shows a record £1.1billion was spent online in the UK on Black Friday alone. Online sales in particular saw a dramatic rise.
Black Friday only began in 2010 in the US but it quickly became a ‘thing’. in the last couple of years it has also taken off the UK along with Cyber Monday to make up the Black Friday Weekend.
Black Friday weekend sales totalled a massive £3.5b with significant increases of sales made via a smartphone or tablet.
Mobile ecommerce (buying on your smartphone or tablet)
Mobile sales experienced continued growth this year in the US, with more than a third of sales taken via a mobile device on Black Friday (iOS proving more popular than Android, and smartphones winning over tablets).
Equivalent figures have not been shared for the UK but shopping on a tablet or mobile was no doubt popular during Black Friday. The blog at internetretailing.net made a note of how mobile versions of website from the top 25 UK retailers were doing during the morning of Black Friday. You can read the post and see what they found here.
Some leading websites struggled with traffic
Given that large online shops do their best to prepare for heavy traffic during sale periods, it shows the amount of people shopping online when even they struggle.
Customers reported a slow Tesco website, though Tesco refuted any problems. John Lewis had much bigger problems. Their website was offline for an hour on Friday afternoon, despite increasing server capacity by one third in preparation for the online surge.
Argos also had a hard time coping with the Black Friday online traffic. Customers found the website slow and crashes were reported. Argos has also launched a new express delivery service leading up to the sale weekend, leaving them with a huge task, and reportedly some undelivered orders.