Summarising Black Friday – what strategy was adopted by the e-commerce sector?

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Black Friday generates high e-commerce traffic each year. The customers are hoping for good discounts, and online shops expect high profits due to the increased demand. Did the prices on the market actually decrease on 27 November? What strategy was adopted by e-commerce companies? This year, Deloitte has once again worked together with Dealavo to prepare a report summarising this day in the context of the e-commerce sector.

What was the average decrease in prices on Black Friday?

The average decrease in the prices of the analysed products was just 3.4%. This is a result similar to the previous years, when the prices fell by 4% (2019) and 3.5% (2018).

However, this does not mean that there were no items discounted by several dozen percent on the market – the shops frequently used a strategy where they would discount one flagship product in a particular category. To learn more about this, read the interview with Greg Białokozowicz.

In what product categories were the highest discounts recorded?

The highest price discounts could be observed in the smartwatches category, where the offers included a 24%–26% discount on average. Smart speakers and laptops were also sold at a discount.

Unlike in the previous years, the prices did not decrease in the video games and consoles category – instead, the average price increased in comparison with 20 November.

Were the prices of discounted products similar in different online shops?

Similarly to the previous years, there were significant differences in the prices of products sold at different shops. In the video games category, the differences between the cheapest and most expensive offer would reach 117%, in the case of electronic accessories103%, and for perfumes and cosmetics – almost 100%.

Some shops may have been disappointed if they introduced discounts that were only slightly higher than those of their competitors, failing to gain the interest of the customers as a result. This is one of the situations where it is a good idea to use dynamic pricing rules to secure a competitive position while maintaining an appropriate margin.

Were the prices lower than on last year’s Black Friday?

The prices of 55% of the products were higher than last year. This means that most of the analysed products get more and more expensive each year. This was particularly noticeable in the category of tablets, board games, toys and consoles. As observed by Mateusz Mańkowski, this is caused by the overall increase of prices in the economy and by the smaller stock available in the shops due to the pandemic.

In certain categories, however, the prices were lower than one year ago – this was true for smart speakers, smartphones, wearables and video games.

Scope of the survey

The survey was conducted by Deloitte in cooperation with Dealavo. You can find the full report here. The analysis concerned 412 products in 1026 online shops on the Polish market.

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