For many retailers, Black Friday order fulfilment has become one of the most challenging important tasks in the consumer sales calendar and has become particularly significant for online retailers. So, what’s the background to Black Friday?
Where and when did Black Friday originate?
The term, ‘Black Friday’” gained national popularity in the United States during the early 1980s. Retailers traditionally operated at a financial loss for most of the year (January to November) and made their profit during the peak Christmas season, beginning on the day after Thanksgiving. When this was recorded in the financial records, common accounting practices would use red ink to show negative amounts and black ink to show positive amounts. Black Friday, under this theory, is the beginning of the period when retailers would no longer be ‘in the red’, instead taking in most of the year’s profits.
During the following decades, global retailers adopted the term and the date to promote their Christmas sales. In the 21st century, ‘Black Friday’ became part of the seasonal marketing mantra for many online retailers, spearheaded by Amazon.
Black Friday in the UK
As with many things American, they usually find their way over the pond to Britain and Black Friday is now part of our culture and calendars. But how did it arrive in the UK?
Previously, ‘Black Friday’ referred to the day when UK emergency services activated their contingency plans to cope with the increase in workload due to many people going out drinking on the last Friday before Christmas.
Amazon introduced the US-style Black Friday concept to the UK in 2010, offering a range of discounts and price deals to consumers. However, the UK wasn’t ready to fully embrace this phenomenon and ‘save the date’ – at least not for another three years. In 2013, Walmart-owned Asda introduced the concept and gave it a big push, and it was then that Black Friday started to fly in the UK. Shortly after, retailers saw the potential and embraced the practice, and this continues to grow in size and scope, with Cyber Monday and Cyber Week as consequential derivatives.
What are the impacts of Black Friday order fulfilment?
Covid-19 changed the way the world works but the effect on the retail sector has been interesting. The anticipation and hunger for Black Friday has dwindled over the last couple of years but retailers have enjoyed a steadier flow of shopping traffic. This was driven by people spending more time at home, having more disposable income as travel costs associated with work decreased. Generally, people needed a ‘tonic’ to get them through the pandemic.
However, another current concern for consumers is the impact of supply chain issues that could affect deliveries of everything from food to gifts. Many multi-channel retailers have reported a shortage of products to put on the shelves or online. The knock-on effect has led to rising prices overall, but the toy industry, which relies heavily on Christmas sales, has felt the price-hike keenly, with prices increase by over 10% across all toy categories.
Black Friday order fulfilment – by Adstral
As an online retailer, you may have concerns that you can cope with your Black Friday order fulfilment activity. If so, we are here to help.
We handle everything from beauty and healthcare products, fashion jewellery, toys and games, luxury footwear, perfume, small giftware and homeware items, small electronic and electrical items. We also manage subscription orders.
Dive into our Knowledge Base and discover some useful articles
https://adstralfulfilment.co.uk/knowledge-base/ or check out our services https://adstralfulfilment.co.uk/fulfilment-service/