Biggest SALE of the season.
Hurry, it’s almost gone…
The tell-tale signs of holiday shopping that begin with Black Friday and Cyber Monday are riddled with exclusivity and immediacy prompting consumers everywhere to swipe, slide, insert, and scan their way to the best deals.
Black Friday participation has been a feature throughout most of the decade in North America with Canadian shoppers playing ‘catch up’ to the United States for a number of years. In the early years, Black Friday shopping was mainly a U.S. tradition but as the two currencies became closer in value around 2013, the popularity of Black Friday in Canada skyrocketed and never really looked back (though the Canadian dollar did, adding to the need to shop in country these days). A study by the Retail Council of Canada (RCC) finds that Canadian consumers now shop on the pre-Christmas weekend more than the previous top shopping event in Canada: Boxing Day. The RCC finds show that 43% of Canadians are now Black Friday shoppers compared to 34% on Boxing Day and 32% on Cyber Monday. The role that Black Friday & Cyber Monday play in the holiday shopping season as main fixture is undeniable on both sides of the border.
What’s changed this year is the COVID-19 pandemic of course. It has affected physical shopping, retail and consumer finances and general anxiety levels. Cross-border shopping won’t be a thing with continued restrictions. Finances set aside for travel also won’t be as much of a factor. While there will be trimming and reallocating of spending, prior recessions and downturns have shown that consumers are resilient and shopping will just be adjusted and more ‘creative’ this year.
The shopping landscape is always evolving and a change to in-store habits will continue the rise of online sources. Shoppers’ in-store considerations will factor in avoiding crowds and proximity to home, so online is increasingly preferred. The 2020 Deloitte Holiday Retail Survey shows 64% now plan to holiday shop online, up from 59% in 2019. The shift away from Boxing Day in Canada can be attributed to factors such as timing and online availability also. Cyber Monday e-commerce draws people’s attention more than ever now. While the pandemic is disrupting holiday shopping trends the season is just shifted towards more online-focus priorities.
While consumers cash in on Cyber Monday deals and online opportunities, cybersecurity threats are an ever-present source of concern. Hackers working in a growing ‘dark web’ black market interested in private data put shoppers in an uncertain landscape of security weaknesses and data breach threats. And shoppers are increasingly aware, and afraid. In a Holiday Shopping ID Theft survey, 66% of shoppers expressed concern about their personal data being compromised and 78% are concerned about shopping at retailers with data breaches or multiple data breaches within the last year. With so many shoppers trying to take advantage of online deals cyber-criminals focus their efforts on the holidays and the fear of threats to private data being all over the place has become a common part of the season.
While you are out there looking for those holiday discounts, protect yourself by remembering these tips: