New sales records set for John Lewis & Amazon

Unless you spent the last few days under a rock with no 3G, you’ll have seen the mayhem that occurred on Black Friday.

Images of people in supermarkets grappling for smart TVs erupted on our screens, along with news of record-breaking sales numbers.

The figures

Internet retail experts IMRG reported a total online spend of £810m, well over the predicted figure of £555.5m.

John Lewis announced an increase in web traffic of 307% compared to last year’s Black Friday, whilst Amazon topped their 2013 record, selling around 64 items per second – reaching an approximate total of 5.5m orders (The Guardian). Traffic levels meant shoppers had to wait to access some websites, and in store, it seemed all hell was breaking loose, with shoppers jostling for stock and police making arrests in supermarkets in London and Manchester (BBC).

Though predicted to reach even higher numbers, Cyber Monday (Black Friday’s less violent, online cousin) failed to beat the phenomenal figures reached three days previous, with online sales clocking up £720m, which was still almost double that of last year's (Metro).

Will we see the same activity in 2015?

Black Friday is said to have been introduced to the UK by Amazon in 2010, and since then these shopping events have continued to grow and evolve each year, with retailers extending offers across the weekend and beyond Cyber Monday. But with improvements to click and collect and last minute delivery services, shoppers are now willing bypass the mayhem and leave their Christmas purchases until closer to the big day, which could result in falling numbers.

Shopping on mobile devices becomes more popular each year as the customer experience improves (Internet Retailing), and with the process being made increasingly simple and accessible at any time in any place, what's the rush?That said, we love a bargain in the UK, and these shopping frenzies are set to remain a permanent fixture in the lead up to Christmas for years to come.

As long as retailers continue to offer these deals, we’ll continue to fight over them…

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