Improved Black Friday footfall figures compared to 2018

Black Friday footfall increased by six per cent compared to Black Friday 2018, against a back drop of Brexit uncertainty and a late general election, neither of which appear to have dampened consumers’ desire for a promotion.

This is according to official data from ShopperTrak. The company reported that overall footfall for the year sits 0.2 per cent up against the same period in 2018.

Saturday 30 November was predicted to be the second busiest shopping day of the entire Christmas period, according to the Festive Peak Shopping 2019/20 Report released by Sensormatic Solutions. The report maps the top five busiest UK shopper traffic days for peak trading 2019, based on insight from more than 1.5 million data collection devices in the retail marketplace and 40 billion shopper visits captured by the ShopperTrak brand each year.

This, the report suggests, demonstrates the increasing importance of the promotional event in driving in-store footfall – not just across the Black Friday weekend, but also in building momentum into Christmas trading, as retailers extend their in-store promotion strategies. Having insight into how many shoppers are walking into their stores, along with the timing, helps retailers make informed decisions and create more impactful marketing promotions during the retail industry’s busiest shopping days.

Nick Pompa, Global General Manager at ShopperTrak, commented: “We know that shoppers are in the driving seat now on how, when and where they shop, but our data shows that Black Friday still ranks as a key day for bricks-and-mortar. Our data helps retailers kick start their peak trading strategies and maximise their returns.” 

By leveraging insight from shopper traffic trends, retailers can optimise scheduling decisions, merchandising of floor sets, inventory fulfilment and even loss prevention awareness to help maximise sales opportunities presented during the busiest days of peak trading. Making the most of the footfall you have is more important now than ever before.

“Black Friday used to be a single day of deals, but this year some retailers started their promotions as early as mid-November,” continued Mr Pompa. “Its impact on in-store shopper traffic can be seen well into December as festive footfall starts to climb, with the physical store remaining key to peak trading success.

“Progressive retailers that have actionable insights into traffic data and can overlay it with other key metrics, including inventory, and can leverage this information to optimise customer service during this critical trading period. This strategy helps ensure that customers’ high expectations are met, as shopper traffic increases throughout the peak trading season. Prioritising in-store customer experience can help retailers effectively drive sales, customer retention and brand loyalty.”

Understanding a store’s “power hours” can help identify the best times for stock replenishment, updating displays and managing other customer fulfilment options, such as click and collect. By using traffic data to identify less busy times in stores, sales staff can achieve all these essential tasks in a more-timely manner, leaving more time to focus on the customer during peak periods.