More retailers are likely to offer discounts and promotions in the final days before Christmas than were on offer during the Black Friday weekend, according to PwC.
Analysis by PwC shows 84% of online retailers and 75% of high street stores offered some kind of promotion over the Black Friday weekend, a similar level to last year.
PwC research over previous years also shows that many of the retailers offering Black Friday promotions had returned merchandise to full price by the beginning of December, in order to preserve margins during the critical Christmas shopping period.
While this year seems to have followed the pattern of previous years, PwC predicts that more retailers are likely to offer discounts and promotions in the final days before Christmas than were on offer during the Black Friday weekend.
Commenting on the data, Lisa Hooker, consumer markets leader at PwC, said:
“UK retailers were clearly keen to participate in Black Friday weekend promotions to attract the 50% of consumers who said they’d be looking to shop for bargains.
“Our research shows that several retailers that did not previously participate in Black Friday events did offer some kind of promotion this year - confirming the influence of the American tradition in the UK shopping calendar.
“This year, however, over a third of retailers offering discounts over the Black Friday weekend returned to full price sales the following week - both online and in stores.
“Consumers have told us that the beginning of December is the most popular time to do their Christmas shopping, so retailers have listened and learnt to schedule their promotions to preserve margins over this critical period.
“Nevertheless, as we rapidly approach Christmas itself, we are already seeing a surge in promotional activity as retailers try to attract customers through their doors and clear festive stock, particularly as last week’s snow and ice put a dent on high street footfall across large parts of the country.
“Last year, 98% of the online retailers we surveyed had some kind of homepage promotion in the week before Christmas. While this year’s trend does not suggest we will reach the same levels, we are still expecting to see more bargains for shoppers in the coming days, with more retailers on promotion this week than over Black Friday.”