Retailers dreaming of last minute ‘Black Christmas’

News, Retail

Today’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) retail sales results show an unexpected fall in the amount of goods sold in November – despite the allure of Black Friday deals.

The amount of goods Brits bought in November fell by -0.4% compared to October and tumbled -5.9% compared to November of last year.

The home delivery expert ParcelHero says these latest figures are a particular blow as they include Black Friday’s results, normally a good indicator of how well Christmas is likely to go for retailers.

Says ParcelHero’s Head of Consumer Research, David Jinks:

“Looking at the overall parcel volumes for late November we feared Black Friday had been something of a clunker, and that seems to be the case. Experts had been talking of a 0.3% uplift in sales in November but that certainly didn’t happen.

“Perhaps even more concerning, even though Brits bought fewer items in November, we actually spent 0.5% more than in October, and 4.2% more than in November 2021. That’s the impact of galloping inflation – and also indicates there were fewer bargains around over this year’s long Black Friday period.

“The gloss has certainly been taken off Black Friday sales. There was a notably lower seasonal spike in sales this November, compared to 2021, and online sales suffered as a result. The value of goods we bought online this November collapsed by -5% compared to last year, even though we actually spent 0.6% more than in October – reflecting the lack of great Black Friday online discounts.

“Online sales did manage to cling to their 26.2% overall share of the entire November retail spend, however. That’s been the case since May and shows that, at least, we now know the new “normal” for online shopping post-pandemic.”

To check the easy-to-use retailers’ final order and final mailing dates tool, see:

Chris Price
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