Most people in Malta plan to participate in Black Friday this weekend but a large chunk will do their shopping online, a new survey has found.
A survey conducted by EY Malta found that 63% of Maltese residents plan to shop during Black Friday, renowned for its pre-Christmas bargains, while 37% have no intention doing so. Out of the 63% who do plan to take part in Black Friday, 37% said they will mostly shop from physical stores while 35% said they will mostly shop online, perhaps a reflection of caution being exercised due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Asked how much money they intend to spend, 59% of potential shoppers said they intend to spend the same as in previous years, 31% said they plan to spend less and 10% plan to spend more.
EY Malta urged retail outlets to focus on enhancing their online operations during these challenging times:
“In the short-term, retailers need to review their marketing strategies to ensure they can maximise the opportunities of what could be a dramatic reduction in spending. Online campaigns and capacity need to be maximised; and the technological and fulfilment infrastructure needs to adequately support online demand.”
“In the longer term, the online experience needs to be enriched with easy access to expert advice so that retailers can replicate the in-store benefits of physical engagement with both products and staff. Fashion retailers, for example, have started to respond to this trend with online stylist advice. Categories such as technology have an even greater opportunity to engage their customers through tactics such as video calls with consumers to help them choose the right product.”
“To ensure the customer is not lost to a slicker experience elsewhere, physical retailers need to ensure they have: a well-thought-out product range; the option of expert, instore advice (perhaps with appointment bookings); and the ability to convert and seamlessly fulfil demand that best suits the customer – either through immediate pick up in store, same day collection, or delivery to home.”
Meanwhile, the Malta Chamber of SMEs launched a Black Friday campaign in which they highlighted those stores which are carrying out special offers online and are providing delivery service.
“It is very positive to note that an increasing number of businesses are participating in the initiative but more than this that businesses have overcome what used to be a national disadvantage and are now able to provide a full service of buying online and delivering,” the Chamber said.
“It has never been clearer how much local consumers need to support local businesses to help each other and come out of the crises. The SME Chamber emphasis that by supporting local we are supporting our own jobs and families.”