Black Friday discounting jumps 77% as spending frenzy reaches new peak, Vend reports

It was another bumper Black Friday for the UK’s high street retailers this year, with stores receiving a 32% boost in retail spending compared to the November average, and a 22% increase on last year.

Data from cloud-based point of sale software Vend also showed the level of discounting was 77% higher this year compared to last, as retailers looked to beat out the competition and cash-in on keen shoppers. And discounts increased even further on Saturday, at levels 120% higher than last year.

Year-on-year retail spending jumped the most in Manchester – increasing by 115% – while in Glasgow spending rose by 81% and in Edinburgh by 45%. Stores in London also saw a 27% increase in spending compared to last year, however spending in both Bristol and Birmingham dropped slightly. Saturday was also a bumper sales day across the country, up 13% from last year.

However when looking at Black Friday against the November average, every region saw a spike, including Bristol which has the biggest jump in spend, up 167% compared to the average Friday in November. This was followed by Manchester (140%) and Birmingham (95%). 

“It’s great that retailers are still seeing such high levels of shopper spend on Black Friday, but with the rise in discounting it could be a double-edged sword,” says Marc Cooper, vice president EMEA at Vend. “Last year we saw discounting drop off slightly on the Saturday, while sales stayed high, which was where retailers could recoup some of their profits. This year, discounting increased even further on Saturday and sales didn’t reach the same heights as Friday. Retailers need to be careful they’re not devaluing their products too much by slapping on big discounts and losing margin so close to Christmas. However, if this rise in spending is a sign of strong consumer confidence and demand heading into the holiday season, then that’s great news for the industry.” 

Vend is a leading retail management software company that powers thousands of UK retailers, from large multi-outlets to owner-operated businesses.


UK cities by numbers:


Rise in retail spend Black Friday 2016 compared to 2015

1.    Manchester (115%)

2.    Glasgow (81%)

3.    Edinburgh (45%)

4.    London (27%)

5.    Leeds (13%)

6.    Bristol (10%)

7.    Birmingham (-3%)

8.    Brighton (-13%)


Rise in retail spending Black Friday 2016 compared to November average

1.    Bristol (167%)

2.    Manchester (140%)

3.    Birmingham (95%)

4.    London (44%)

5.    Leeds (39%)

6.    Edinburgh (27%)

7.    Glasgow (15%)

8.    Brighton (7%)