Sunday, January 16

South Africans prepared for Black Friday

Consumers are spending differently this Black Friday. While retailers are looking forward to a great sales weekend during the annual shopping holiday, many have launched month-long sales campaigns to give consumers early access to their promotions. This has been called ‘black November’.

It is a calculated move. Under immense pressure to make up for lost sales for the year, retailers have drifted away from a brief and intense spike in response to the changing spending habits of South African consumers.

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This is the opinion of Thomas Pays, CEO and co-founder of Ozow, who says that there has been a significant change in the way people shop. “For the past 18 months, most of the people have been trapped at home. It means that they have done most of their interaction and purchases online, mainly on their mobile phones. “

According to Ozow, a staggering 85% of all transactions during Black Friday are made on mobile devices, and only 14% are completed on desktop computers.

Pays says that with more time spent on social media, new in-app purchase channels, and the improvement and optimization of mobile websites, there has been a notable increase in online sales. “Bolstered by hassle-free checkout experiences, it has become much more convenient and faster for consumers who want to avoid crowded malls and long lines at the store.”

Whether online or in store, Black Friday is still considered the busiest trading day.

In 2020, Ozow saw a 139% increase in transactions on Black Friday, compared to the previous day’s transactions. More importantly, the processing the value increased 210% on Black Friday compared to the rest of the month. The day also represented 17% of the November processing value.

Historically, Capitec, FNB, Standard Bank and Absa respectively led the process of processing the highest transaction volumes and value during the Black Friday weekend.

This year, however, budgets have gotten much tighter. Pays notes that consumers have felt the impact of the pandemic, the July riots and the weakened economy, who are spending significantly less than before.

Based on transactional data from Ozow, it says that consumers are spending 30% less on the average value of each transaction this month (November) compared to the same period in 2020. However, it does not mean that there has been a slowdown in spending.

Despite being much more budget and offer-conscious, Pays says there has been a huge acceptance among South Africans shopping online. “Compared to previous years, we are seeing an increase in transaction volume this November.”

The time of day also makes a difference. Pays expects consumers to spend more on higher-value deals around 10:00 a.m. “On the contrary, people are more likely to buy low-value items at 7:00 p.m.[1]. “

He believes consumers are planning ahead, with people looking to capitalize on this year’s Black Friday to find affordable gifts for the holiday season as well. “Retailers need to understand that they are dealing with consumers who have more experience and information than before, with more options at their disposal. They will be on the lookout for a cost-effective, secure and hassle-free purchasing process, which also includes a simple refund process, if required. “

As more people are expected to shop this year, retailers anticipate Black Friday 2021 to be much more crowded and lucrative than previous years.

Tips for Consumers This Black Friday

As easy as shopping online is on Black Friday, Pays says there are risks too. So, as you browse the web for the best deals, keep the following in mind:

Do your homework: The first deal may not always be the best. Therefore, it is important to do your research to compare prices.

Start now: Since many retailers offer deals throughout the month, it’s important to take advantage of them to make sure you’re getting exactly what you want without worrying about stocks running low.

Online store: It’s convenient and safe – you can do it from the comfort of your home.

Buy from trusted brands: Buy only from trusted e-commerce stores and traditional stores that have also extended their offerings to the online realm.

Website security: Make sure your payments are secure. Look for the little lock next to the website URL; this indicates that the information on the site is encrypted.

Keep your information safe: Do not reveal any information. If you use a credit card, do not save your details, make sure they are deleted from the site, and be sure to log out once you have accumulated your offers.

Check the links: While convenient, shopping online through your mobile device presents many new security challenges. Hackers use shortened URLs on social media, and once it’s clicked, you have no idea where they are going.

Thomas Pays, CEO and Co-Founder of Ozow.

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