A retail storm is brewing and it’s set to hit the 27th of November 2020 with a force greater than those of years before. On this fabled Friday, hordes of shoppers race to malls to grab the biggest deals of the year while the tech-savvy among them take the fervour online entering lightning-fast click-wars to secure their shopping wishlists. With 37% of consumers shopping more online due to COVID concerns, retailers are preparing for the impending pandemonium of this year’s Black Friday by strengthening and diversifying their fulfilment strategies to avoid disastrous delays, frustrated consumers and an over-encumbered delivery system.
If last year’s online sales spiked by 400% on Black Friday, this year’s could prove to be one of the biggest days in online retail history with many consumers engaging in Ecommerce for the first time due to the lasting effects of the national lockdown. Because money is tighter than normal, there is also the likelihood that consumers are holding out for Black Friday deals to shop for their essentials at discounted rates.
Consumers will also take their shopping online to avoid the massive Black Friday crowds, especially with COVID still present. In the U.S., retail giants, like Target, Walmart and Bestbuy, have even decided to close their stores on this day to combat the spread of COVID, taking their Black Friday sales strategy entirely online.
This massive influx of online sales will certainly strain retailers’ delivery strategies even more than usual, unleashing a plethora of potential logistical problems. To effectively service this spike, retailers are diversifying their strategies by offering consumers several delivery options. Such optionality will spread the logistics load on your business during the chaos of Black Friday while simultaneously giving consumers the freedom of choosing a method of delivery that meets their particular needs.
One such delivery method is Click & Collect, which has been pioneered in South Africa by smart logistics company, Pargo. Through their nationwide network of over 2,500 pickup points, consumers can shop online and collect their orders at a time and place that suits them best. Click & Collect gives consumers the ability to secure their Black Friday specials far from the maddening crowds and pick up their orders later, thereby lowering the number of expensive home deliveries retailers usually undertake during this time.
Curbside collection is another delivery method that’s finally hit our shores and will likely make a big impact this Black Friday. Through South Africa’s first drive-through shopping experience at the V&A Waterfront consumers can shop from all their favourite retailers on Black Friday and collect their orders without ever having to leave the safety of their car.
With over 60% of consumers picking retailers based on the convenience of their delivery options, it is clear that optionality is the best retail strategy. So if you are hoping to capitalise on what is fast becoming the biggest online retail day of the year, make sure you have the measures in place to deliver the best customer experience.