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Black Friday 2015 set to see demand quadruple, compared to last year

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Four times as many shoppers plan to buy online on this year’s Black Friday than took part in the promotional event last year, new research suggests.

eDigitalResearch questioned 6,371 consumers in June as part of an ongoing Have your Say study commissioned by Yodel. It found that while 8% of those surveyed had bought on Black Friday 2014, 30% said they would do so on Black Friday 2015, set to fall on November 27.

Younger shoppers, in particular, are more likely to buy online that day: 39% of 18 to 24-year-olds said they would do so, while 18% of over-65s would join them.

The study comes as retailers and logistics businesses are hard at work planning for this coming holiday season. It found that more than three-quarters of shoppers (76%) said they were happy to wait a little longer for Black Friday orders to arrive, as long as they are kept informed. Asked to specify how long they’d be happy to wait, 27% said an extra three days and 28% two days. A fifth (21%) would wait one day, while only 13% would not be prepared to wait. Of those who said they could not wait, 44% were happy to pay more for next-day delivery. Women (77%) would be more likely to be happy to wait than men (72%).

The findings reveal consumer expectations that are likely to help retailers plan for peak season this year.

Yodel’s executive chairman, Dick Stead, said: “2014 was the year that online Christmas shopping in the UK changed forever, with retail websites crashing, warehouses straining and the majority of carriers struggling to cope with unforecast volumes. Our research shows that 2015 is set to break the mould once again, with nearly four times as many people planning to take advantage of the Black Friday online promotions.

“Yodel has already made significant investment to cope with the increased demand. While this has created additional capacity and efficiency, it does not change the fact that there is finite next-day delivery capacity across the parcel industry.

“Therefore it’s reassuring that the majority of consumers are telling us that they are prepared to wait a little longer for their delivery during peak promotions. For them the chance to bag a bargain is more important than the speed it arrives, and this will automatically create extra capacity across the industry and enable us to keep prices at a level that retailers and their shoppers expect.”

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