How did Black Friday get so popular?

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With Thanksgiving now gone, Friday is here and there are massive discounts and amazing bargains with references to one of the biggest days in retail – Black Friday.

But how did the term ‘Black Friday’ come about? There are many rumours that revolve around Black Friday. Firstly, it is a popular time during thanksgiving where US citizens have a break, thus encouraging buyers to start Christmas shopping early. Additionally, this is when shops expect to see a profit, or go ‘into the black’ as opposed to going ‘into the red’.

There are many other rumours about the origins of Black Friday – from rumours of slave traders discounting slaves on the day after Thanksgiving, to other rumours, such as the term being invented by the Philadelphia Police Department. Whatever it is, it is an international phenomenon now.

The increasing trend of Black Friday

The number of shoppers and sales have been increasing year on year. In 2016, the UK saw over £6.5bn in sales, a 52% increase from 2015 (£3.3bn). Across the pond, the US saw over $655bn in sales, which is a increase of 3.6% from 2015 ($626bn). Though America has a smaller growth rate, it is worth noting that Black Friday has been around since the early 2000’s, while it has only recently kicked off in the UK.

£1.74m is expected to be spent every minute online in the UK on Black Friday this year, according to figures from online trade association IMRG

Online sales have played a major role in Black Friday as there has been an ever increasing demand through the shopping method. In 2015, 1 in 5 UK retailers were unable to meet the demand and as a result their website had crashed. However, £1.74m is expected to be spent every minute online in the UK on Black Friday this year, according to figures from online trade association IMRG, with £700m spent before 09:00. Retailers are prepared for today’s surge of traffic.

Many retailers have joined the bandwagon to help boost their sales in what is such a crucial point of this season. From high street retailers like Argos and John Lewis, to the deals by online retailers like Ebay and Amazon, 2017 is looking to be the busiest yet for the event.

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