UK retailers set for Black Friday sales record
- Credit: PA
Retail spending on Britain’s high streets and online is expected to reach nearly £1.4billion today as “Black Friday” continues to capture the imagination of UK consumers.
The Centre for Retail Research expects online purchases to total £966million, with spending at bricks and mortar stores likely to take the total to £1.39billion.
Data group Experian-IMRG believes online spending alone could reach £1.07bn, which would represent a 32% increase on last year’s Black Friday total of £810m and make today the first day ever where online retail sales in the UK have topped £1bn.
Visa Europe, meanwhile, predicts that shoppers will spend £721m online on its cards on today, up from £616m last year.
Black Friday began in the Unites States where it falls on the day after the Thanksgiving holiday – the fourth Thursday in November – and traditionally marks the start of the Christmas shopping season.
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An uplift in online sales on the Monday following Thanksgiving has more recently seen it dubbed as Cyber Monday, with the entire extended four-day weekend becoming a key event in the retail calendar.
The Centre for Retail Research believes that sales in the UK over the period could reach £3.49bn this year.
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However, police have warned shops offering Black Friday deals to make sure they have adequate security in place, with last year having seen chaos at a number of stores as crowds grappled for cut-price big-ticket items, and consumer groups have warned shoppers to check regular prices, to ensure that “special” offers represent genuine bargains.