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Why Retailers Need To Offer Finance To Their Customers This Black Friday 2017

It’s a strange phenomenon. When it started, no one is certain. Where it started, some guess Philadelphia, USA. How it became one of the world’s largest sales holidays, that’s anyone’s guess. But one thing is for certain – Black Friday has taken over our retail landscape and brands cannot afford to ignore it.

Black Friday 2017 sales are expected to be just as great, if not greater, than last year’s. But unfortunately, so will competition. Retailers will have to stand out from the crowd if they really want to benefit from the sales holiday. And one sure way to do so is through offering finance. By allowing them to pay for their purchase in flexible monthly instalments with Divido customer finance. Retailers should offer finance all-year round as it helps to boost sales and average order values no matter the season. But why is it especially important to offer finance during Black Friday 2017?

Spend is expected to soar

For many brands, Black Friday is their busiest period time of the year. Traffic levels soar and, if prepared, sales too. Last year on Black Friday alone, UK shoppers spent a record-breaking £1.23bn from the comfort of their homes or in-store – a 12.2% increase from 2015. Over the whole Black Friday period from the 21st-28th November, a whopping £6.45bn was transacted in the UK.

And this year shows no signs of behaving any differently. The potential is undeniable if retailers can implement the most effective conversion strategies – and one of these strategies is retail finance. When a customer is at the checkout, they are the most vulnerable to abandonment – the sale is really hanging in the balance. By offering the customer the option to pay for their purchase in monthly instalments with Divido however, this presents a huge encouragement to the customer to finalise the transaction, ensuring you make the most of the boost in willingness to purchase over Black Friday.

Consumers will open to making higher-priced purchases

Over the course of Black Friday, many products that customers look to buy are high-ticket items as these tend to represent the best deals and savings. During last year’s Black Friday, Which.co.uk reported that TVs, laptops and tablets were the most popular products.

When selling more expensive items, naturally this typically increases abandonment rates as the shopper is put off by the prospect of handing over a larger sum of money all at once. Divido’s finance removes this obstacle to purchase however, for the consumer is able to pay in flexible instalments over the course of 3, 6 or 12 months. Offering finance during Black Friday when purchases of high-priced items rises is therefore the perfect incentive to drive conversions.

Competition will be unprecedented

This year, we expect more retailers than ever to get involved in Black Friday. The unavoidable result? Competition will be as fierce as ever and retailers will need to offer something above and beyond their competitors to reap the benefits of Black Friday. So how can they do this without having to offer the lowest prices and cutting into their bottom line? By offering finance, and importantly, promoting it to their customers.

Retailers can advertise their finance option through a number of channels and at varying stages of the buyer journey to drive conversion. Positioning it at the checkout is vital, but so too earlier on in the buyer journey, such as on the product pages. For those customers who have shown interest in a product but abandoned, retailers can also send remarketing emails to them showcasing how they can easily buy this specific product in instalments with Divido finance. The same can be done through programmatic advertising and direct mail, amongst so much more.

Rise in mobile sales will continue

During Black Friday 2016, 51% of orders over the sales holiday period were made via mobile. However, though this shows a huge potential to boosts sales via this device, global abandonment rates on mobile were also (much) higher than on desktop – 78.1% on smartphone compared to 63.8% on desktop.

These statistics shows that there is still much improvement needed to be done on mobile devices before it can ever truly overtake desktop as the primary purchasing channel. And one way in which this can be improved is by offering Divido’s finance solution. Divido is omni-channel, optimised not only for desktop, but also for mobile (and in-store) – so wherever customers want to shop, retailers can offer them an optimised finance offering to drive them to convert.

Kate Rogerson, Divido 

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