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PriceSpy Survey Reveals Covid-19 Won’t Put Kiwis Off Shopping In-store This Black Friday

Black Friday remains one of the most popular shopping days of the year in New Zealand and a new PriceSpy survey reveals Black Friday spending was at its highest in 2019

  • But while spending was up, fewer people shopped - and less intend to shop this Black Friday
  • So, what’s in store for Black Friday 2020?
  • Will Covid-19 have an impact on the flash sale day?
  • Will shoppers get the deals they’ve held out for, or will Black Friday deals be disappointing?
  • And how will the virus affect how safe people feel to shop?

According to a new consumer omnibus survey* commissioned by the fully impartial price and product comparison site, PriceSpy, two fifths (40 per cent) of New Zealanders reportedly shopped on Black Friday last year (2019). However, the survey also found the number of people shopping on the global flash sale dropped, down eight per cent year-on-year, suggesting popularity for the big day may have reached its peak.

Liisa Matinvesi-Bassett, New Zealand country manager for PriceSpy, says: “Originally launching in the US, Black Friday has most certainly grown phenomenally in popularity – both in New Zealand and around the world. But is consumer interest starting to slow down? Insights from both our survey and historical click data suggest this may be the case.”

  • In 2019, the number of people shopping on PriceSpy on Black Friday grew marginally, up 0.2 per cent year-on-year. This was a stark contrast to the growth witnessed in 2018 when popularity increased 21 per cent year-on-year.
  • Almost three-tenths of the survey respondents (29 per cent) also said they were unlikely to shop on Black Friday this year, up seven per cent year-on-year

Liisa continues: “Realistically, popularity for Black Friday cannot continue rising at the rate it has done, but it’s pretty clear this flash sale day has made its mark on our shopping calendar, proving almost as popular as Boxing Day amongst New Zealanders***.”

Will Covid-19 affect how much shoppers spend on Black Friday this year?

Even though the Black Friday curve is flattening out for shoppers, the amount people are spending appears to be on the rise, with the PriceSpy survey revealing:

  • 65 per cent of Kiwis splurged out on Black Friday deals last year (2019), spending up to $300. In comparison to the year before (2018), only 56 per cent spent up to $300 (up nine per cent)

This year, the survey also found, shoppers were looking to spend big:

  • 31 per cent of New Zealanders upped how much they intend to shell-out for goods on Black Friday (2020), saying they plan to spend over $300
  • And a fifth (20 per cent) say they intend to spend more than $500 on Black Friday (2020), up eight per cent year-on-year (at 12 per cent).

Liisa continues: “Our survey insights suggest Kiwis are looking to make the most of Black Friday savings this year, with shoppers spending bigger sums of money.

“Despite being in a recession, we believe this growth in expected spending may be down to the fall out caused by Covid-19, for example:

  • Many celebrations were put on hold this year. Shoppers may therefore be looking to make Christmas even bigger this year, bulk buying gifts at discounted prices;
  • Due to multiple lockdowns, Kiwis were unable to buy goods across the whole year, so again, people are looking to make purchases now, at discounted prices;
  • The PriceSpy Price Index** found overall price points across all products listed on our website increased this year, up 2.45 per cent***. Consumers may therefore be feeling the pinch and turning to Black Friday to help save money.

“Even though shoppers are looking to spend big, we must remember the pandemic has added a lot of uncertainty to 2020, not least for retailers having to navigate multiple lockdowns, disrupted supply chains and distribution channels. As a result, there’s every possibility Black Friday prices could be affected this year – so we strongly recommend shoppers do their price research.”

Expectations Vs reality – how much of a discount can shoppers expect?

It seems many Kiwis are getting more accustomed to the realisation that they may not get the big discounts they once expected. But others still hold high hopes, as the survey found the average expected discount was 32 per cent. Shoppers may however be disappointed to hear the actual average price drop received across all products listed on the PriceSpy website last year was just five per cent.

“With more looking to splash their cash on Black Friday deals this year - and the fact that the price of goods appears to be creeping up, it’s even more important shoppers conduct important price research before they buy, to gauge whether the deal they are being offered really stacks up.

“For example, retailers change the price points of goods every day, sometimes multiple times a day. Our research found last year, nine per cent of products on the PriceSpy website went up in price a week before Black Friday week, so that retailers could make the Black Friday deals appear more attractive to consumers than what they actually were,” says Liisa.

Has Covid-19 changed how Kiwis shop this Black Friday and do people feel safe?

Despite being amidst a global pandemic, the PriceSpy survey found 43 per cent of shoppers still plan to shop in-store this Black Friday. A third however said they will shop online (including click & collect) and almost a quarter (24 per cent) will shop across both.

Liisa concludes: “Despite Black Friday being known as being an online shopping day, for the last three years, Kiwis have said they plan to do most of their shopping in-store. And it appears Covid-19 isn’t going to change this. In fact, 70 per cent of survey respondents said they ‘feel safe to shop in-store’.

“Interestingly, of the respondents that didn’t feel safe to shop in-store, 45 per cent said it was because ‘other shoppers may not respect distance and the precautionary measures that the shop has taken’.

“No matter where people choose to shop this year, Kiwis need to keep safety front-of-mind and take the relative precautions required, following the advice recommended by the New Zealand Government.

“At the same time, to help shoppers get the best prices this Black Friday, we strongly suggest consumers conduct important price research using a price comparison website or app, like PriceSpy. PriceSpy not only makes light work of conducting price research, but using the site helps ensure shoppers are not left paying over-the-odd prices.”

Keep up to date with all the Black Friday offers, here.

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