An overwhelming majority of shoppers in the UK are currently planning to avoid stores on Black Friday due to fears over Coronavirus.
A study conducted by Contentsquare of 1,000 people found that 91% will be not be shopping in physical stores on the big discount day. There is also a suggestion that a large number of shoppers will be avoiding Black Friday altogether, with just 35% saying they'll be looking for deals online instead.
Online sales were up 14% on Black Friday in 2019, with Contensquare expecting a similar increase this year.
CEO at Contentsquare Jonathan Cherki said: “Historically, Black Friday has been a brick and mortar affair, but in recent years we’ve seen huge increases in the number of consumers shopping for deals online.
“This year might mark the end of Black Friday as we know it, with many leading retailers promising to close their stores to keep the public safe. The recent acceleration of e-commerce means brands need to have access to experience analytics that empower them to quickly see and respond to changing shopping behaviour. With digital now a vastly increasing share of retail wallet, companies need to be able to troubleshoot issues fast and innovate more to maximize sales during peak periods.
He added: “While 27 November may seem a long way away, the best performing brands have already been putting insights from recent months into practice. Digital laggards have an unprecedented opportunity to close the growing gap this season but the window is rapidly closing — this will be the season to show up or shutter up. Rather than putting all of our efforts into one long weekend, we must look to create better online experiences year round. Brands that provide digital experiences that are just as good, or better, than in-store experiences will benefit from happier, more loyal customers and ultimately a boost in revenue online.”