The USA might have just pinched the UK’s most anticipated shopping day of the year by sending us Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
The UK’s relatively tranquil Boxing Day rush has built up an annual tradition of bargain hunting aimed to inject the post-Christmas vacuum with some revived festive excitement. The 28th November saw some of that joviality cleared away, along with the retailer’s shelves!
Joanne (Customer – Leicester Highcross shopping centre) said “It is pure madness, people were camped outside shops for hours, and as soon as the doors opened the stampede began. It’s really unfortunate that people in this day and age are overlooking the safety of others to get a discounted product, but I guess the UK economy is to blame for people’s desire to gain a bargain.”
Here’s a video (one of many):
One alarming aspect some observed was the lack of health and safety seen in stores on Black Friday. Most shops either didn’t predict the flow of traffic they experienced and take sensible safety precautions – or intentionally allowed the crowds to grow as a calculated PR stunt designed to get airplay on the 6 o’clock news.
What have retailers Learnt?
A manager from one of the busiest stores in Highcross Leicester (who wished to stay anonymous) commented, “Black Friday is like boxing day on steroids. The sales, the excitement and the devastation of store are four times what you’d expect to see on Boxing Day. This is why acting ahead is needed, both in terms of customer satisfaction and safety.”
So the next big question is, has Boxing Day been knocked out, or will it stand its ground?