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On Friday 23 November we will see the return of Black Friday, one of the busiest days of the year for V12 and its retailers.

On Friday 23 November we will see the return of Black Friday, one of the busiest days of the year for V12 and its retailers.

What is Black Friday?

Originating from the USA, the UK caught onto the trend of Black Friday back in 2010. Since its introduction, the annual sales event has grown year on year and generated huge profits for both online and high street retailers.

In the past 3 years, Black Friday was the top pre-Christmas online sales day, with some coining it the biggest shopping day of the year, so it's important for our current or prospective retailers to be prepared for this busy time ahead. We've created a short guide to Black Friday, and showing what we're doing at V12 to make the day run as smoothly as possible for our retailers.

What does Black Friday mean for your sales?

Last year's Black Friday sales saw a whopping £1.4bn spent on online sales in the UK, an increase of 11.7% from 2016, with high street sales up 1.6% on the previous year. And this year promises to see sales rise yet again.

With online and in store sales set to break records yet again there has never been a better time to help make your customer's journey of purchasing goods more affordable and stress free.

With the rise in popularity of Black Friday sales comes tougher competition, so those retailers who are looking to make the most of these sales will have to stand out. And one way to do this is by offering finance that allows your customers to pay for their purchases in manageable, monthly instalments, with V12 Retail Finance.

In previous years we have seen a continued trend of large ticket items being purchased on finance during Black Friday. Last year's sales showed a large proportion of purchases were in the electrical, jewellery, outdoor leisure equipment and cycle sectors.

When offering finance payment options on higher priced goods such as these, consumers are statistically more likely to make a purchase as they aren't put off by a large, one off, transaction. The finance options offered by V12 allow your customers to pay in instalments over a specified period, making products and services more affordable.

Having a smooth customer journey is paramount during busy sale periods and at V12 we understand the importance of ensuring customers don't drop out during the sale process. Holding over 50% of the market share for online credit sales in the UK of Finance & Leasing Association (FLA) members*, we know how to keep converting baskets into returning customers.

* Based on FLA results over 4 continuous quarters.

Tips for retailers this Black Friday

As Black Friday becomes more popular so does competition and demand. Here some tips to keep everything running smoothly on November 23rd.

1. Learn from last year, we know that sales are increasing year on year, so have a look at your trends so you can be prepared this year.

2. Create unique and specific promotions, and put your promotions where your customers can see them.

3. Use social media to help you to create content that will attract old and new customers.

4. Make sure your site is responsive, we are increasingly seeing a high percentage of retail finance applications through mobile, customers want to be able to make those sale purchases quickly on their mobile.

5. Optimise your SEO, check your website is visible on Google and use keyword text on your content online.

6. Shoppers will be researching their purchases in the run up to Black Friday and Cyber so keep an eye on what is being searched for on your website.

7. Check everything on your website is running as it should be, you don't want Black Friday to be the day that you find out you have any problems with your site.

8. If you are offering finance, let your customers know. Whether this is on your website or within store, allow your customers to make an informed decision on their payment options.

9. Be prepared and understand the process. If you are a V12 retailer you will already know how straightforward the application process is. But it is important that during busy periods all staff are familiar with the process to ensure a smooth customer journey during this busy day. If you require any assistance or have any questions before Black Friday or during, our customer service and account managers with be here to help.

10. Keep the customer journey smooth and stress free, whether this is online or in store. Many successful retailers stress the importance of having an organised and non-cluttered store, which customers can navigate to find what they want easily.

What are V12 doing over Black Friday and Cyber Monday?

We understand the importance of this busy period for all of our retailers, and our vast amount of experience and knowledgeable staff aim to ensure a smooth day of trading for all our partners.

Our teams, as always, will be on hand to process applications, answer any questions and solve any problems you may be having, quickly and efficiently. Meaning that your trading is not interrupted and you can maximise your sales with peace of mind.

If you are interested in learning more about offering retailer finance payment options through V12, please contact us today.