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EDITORIAL Questions on how shoppers will buy this Black Friday – and how they want to take delivery PLUS RetailX UK Growth 2000 2022 launches

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In today’s InternetRetailing newsletter we have the latest reporting ahead of Black Friday 2022. One common theme is that it’s hard to predict how shoppers are going to spend this Black Friday at a time marked by rising inflation and costs – which may be factors both in encouraging shoppers to buy early – or in discouraging them from buying at all. We’ll be putting the predictions behind us and catching up with how shoppers are actually buying on Black Friday itself, as we cover the latest trends throughout the day.

Today we also report as AO reports falling first half sales and widening losses but says it’s on course to post a full-year profit as it takes a ‘laser focus’ on cutting costs. Its German operation, staff, especially managers, and some warehousing – having expanded quickly during the pandemic – are among the areas being cut back, while it is also introducing delivery charges on everything – but says its customers still appreciate the value of its delivery service.

Indeed, there’s something of a delivery focus in today’s newsletter, as we cover research that suggests delivery workers covering the ecommerce last mile are seeing extra pressure as both workloads and staff shortages rise. The Scandit study suggests many delivery workers – especially in the UK but also around the world – juggle the task alongside other jobs.

Are shoppers losing interest in quick commerce – and especially ultrafast deliveries – as shoppers prioritise convenience over costs? We report on findings from NTT Group. 

The RetailX Growth 2000 United Kingdom 2022 report is now available to download. The annual report names the 2,000 retailers, brands and marketplaces that follow on from the RetailX UK Top500 and shows the breadth and range of the growth focus businesses that sell online and across channels in the UK. 

In today’s guest comment, John Moss of Flintfox argues that intelligent pricing is a sensible alternative for retailers considering freezing prices this winter

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