23 Nov 2018

Retailers riding Black Friday's cyber wake

10:33 am on 23 November 2018

New Zealand retailers are scrambling to make the most of the Black Friday shopping bonanza, which comes after Thanksgiving in the United States.

Shoppers in the US on a past Black Friday.

Shoppers in the US on a past Black Friday. Photo: AFP

The weekend of sales, worth billions of dollars to retailers globally, ends with Cyber Monday and a focus on online shopping.

New Zealand retailers have increasingly moved to be a part of newly-minted major shopping events such as Black Friday.

Marketview managing director Stephen Bridle told Morning Report while the tradition is in its early days here, its a growing trend.

He said as long as big retailers recognise the tradition we will continue to see others jump on board.

Michelle Anderson, chief digital officer for the Warehouse Group, which owns major retailers The Warehouse and Noel Leeming, said it was not just about local consumers but also exposing the group to a global stage.

"We're seeing 45 percent of online retail spend going overseas and what this does is it gives us an opportunity to show New Zealanders that we can meet their expectations around online shopping and access to great products and great prices here locally."

Warehouse Group retailers are not the only New Zealand brands with the sale signs up this weekend.

Retail consultant Chris Wilkinson said more businesses were getting involved.

"A good example would be Briscoes, who have brought their Rebel Sport chain on board so it's that type of momentum that we're starting to see, smaller retailers are doing it, clothing retailers are doing it, so non traditional categories are getting into it as well."

Payments company Paymark said there was a notable surge of business on Black Friday last year and more than $219 million worth of business was done, an increase of 10 percent on the year before.

Mr Wilkinson said global shopping events do not work so well for businesses, where every day-low price is the model rather than discounting.

"When you have these deep expectations of discount, driven by the likes of Black Friday, Cyber Monday it really challenges that model and it'll be really interesting to see how retailers will navigate it this year."

ANZ Bank economist Miles Workman said retailing was extremely competitive, which left the power in the hands of the consumer.