Mid-income earners are hunting travel, entertainment and health deals on #BlackFriday
South Africans spent about R2.9bn on Black Friday last year, and retailers have the opportunity to capitalise again this year, according to CashConnect.
“While retailers have traded in a tough economy all year, Black Friday presents a much-needed chance to boost profits,” said the company. “The popularity of Black Friday has surged over the past few years. A PwC consumer behaviour study published in 2018, stated 54.6% of South Africans participated in Black Friday deals in 2017, and that 66.5% intended to do so in 2018. A similar growth rate will see almost 80% of SA consumers taking to the shops on November 29 2019.”
CEO of Premier Banking at FNB, Kamal Kalian, said clients who earn between R16,500 and R25,000 monthly were spending their money on travel, entertainment and health deals.
FNB customers were also hunting deals at Zando, Superbalist, Takealot, OneDayOnly, Dial a Bed, CTM and Dion Wired.
Consumers are being warned, however, that while a fancy cellphone or dream holiday may look like a good bargain at the time, many South Africans start increasing their spending limits and end up in bad debt.
During the November 19-26 period in 2018, research by TransUnion found that there was a 37% increase in new accounts, 21% increase in total credit limits for new credit cards, clothing and retail revolving accounts.
There was a 49% increase in retail instalment accounts and a 30% increase in retail revolving accounts.
“That’s not unexpected. Home electronics and appliances are as much a part of Black Friday as presents and crackers are of Christmas.
“The problem comes after the madness has worn off,” TransUnion Africa CEO Lee Naik said.
Naik said their data found that six months later, over half of new retail accounts taken out during Black Friday 2018 were more than one month in arrears.
Consumers are also being warned to have heightened awareness for their personal safety.
Charnel Hattingh from Fidelity ADT urged shoppers to be vigilant at malls when doing their shopping.
Hattingh said shoppers are sometimes followed home from malls and then hijacked in their driveways.
“Criminals are aware these shoppers have a car full of new items and are generally easy, distracted targets.
“If you suspect you are being followed, drive immediately to your nearest police station or security provider guard house.”
Meanwhile, Western Cape premier Alan Winde has urged retailers selling alcohol at discount prices to do so with caution, and those buying it to act responsibly.
“We know that SA’s economy is under pressure and consumers are feeling the pinch, so bargains look very appealing, especially just ahead of the festive season.
“But I want to encourage liquor retailers to remain compliant with the liquor legislation, and to check identity documents to confirm that they are not selling to minors,” Winde said.