As Christmas fades into customary memories of short-term celebration and long-term debt, I hear from many market sources that pre-Christmas trading within our markets was poor and below the previous year’s results. Common comments include ‘ we don’t understand, we did the same as last year’ but it would appear the shoppers didn’t come, at least, not in the numbers hoped for.
Black Friday sucked vast amounts of cash out of the retail economy at much reduced margins
In a European economy on the brink of deflation where, retail supply outstrips insufficient consumer demand, the narrow margins of retailing success is to extract Christmas shopper spending at the right time and it appears the 2014 Black Friday sucked vast amounts of cash out of the retail economy at much reduced margins. It surprised even the largest retailers and delivery companies and unfortunately a few accident and emergency wards.
The Genie is out of the bottle
Andy Street, managing director of John Lewis was stated as saying: ‘I personally hope we move back in future to a more normal pattern where sales are smoothed over the Christmas period’. Sorry Mr. Street but it ain’t never gonna happen! The Genie is out of the bottle and with the medium term economic forecast showing much of the same, like it or not we will endure many more annual black Friday’s for years to come.
market traders will face very difficult times this first quarter of 2015
As a market industry, we have always relied on solid pre-Christmas trade to see us through the ‘kipper’ season and I am fearful of the number of market traders who will face very difficult times this first quarter of 2015, without a few thousand in the bank from Christmas sales.
2015 Black Friday will be bigger and more damaging than last year
Be under no illusion, 2015 Black Friday will be bigger and more damaging than last year and the market industry needs to prepare a marketing strategy to divert shoppers’ spend back to the High Street. It will need to be potent and before Friday 27th November, 2015. If every market trader business contributed £20 towards to ‘Mid November Market Madness’ a fund in excess of £1m could be raised for a national campaign, now there’s an idea!