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Consumers get ‘Smart’ about Black Friday

November 18th, 2011

As the annual post turkey day sales event known as ‘Black Friday’ approaches, consumers are preparing themselves for the single largest shopping day of the holiday season.  In a recent survey we conducted of smartphone users, we revealed some interesting insights and methods behind the consumer madness of this epic shop til you drop event.

Prepare Yourselves for the Masses

Only 12% of consumers say they don't plan on shopping Black Friday

This years sales event will be heavily attended, with only 12% of consumers stating that the will not shop Black Friday sales.  With 63% indicating the plan to shop, another quarter of the consumer audience is still on the fence.  With the advertising onslaught only just begining, it will be interesting to watch what percentage of those undecided will step into the fray.

Men and women will take part nearly equally, with women who plan to shop edging out men by only a slight percentage.  The largest segment 80% of those venturing out have annual incomes of between 35 and 49 thousand, while those earning between 100 and 150 thousand a year represent the largest group (20%) planning to sit this one out.

Planning ahead is a wise move.

Consumer’s planning ahead are likely to have the best experience this year as crowds and lines are likely to be large and long.

Less than a quarter of those we surveyed plan to camp out, have a saved place in line or some other method of arriving at the store(s) they want to shop at.  46% say they’ll simply arrive as the store opens, while just over 30% say they’ll risk the possibility of sell outs by waiting until crowds thin out.

Many plan this year’s Black Friday to be the shopping day on which they intend to do most of the holiday shopping, with over half (56%) reporting that they’ll do 50-75% of their holiday shopping during the event.

This year, consumers are coming armed with smartphones, and the use of these devices is nearly certain to influence purchasing behaviors.  Nearly 100% of those surveyed said they would use their smartphones on Black Friday, with 30% stating that comparison shopping using the device would be their number one behavior.   Another 20% say they’ll redeem coupons with their smartphone, a trend that is increasing gradually as brands adopt the powerful method of delivery, but coming in a surprising third, 17% say they predict they’ll use their device to scan QR codes on Black Friday.

So, what will consumers be purchasing at these popular sales?   Popular gifts for kids, such as video games or consoles, tops the list for Black Friday consumers, followed in close order by clothing, computing electronics and video.

High ticket and returnable items are high on shoppers Black Friday wishlists.


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