Marketers change Black Friday plans due to economic turmoil

Optimizely’s survey found a third of marketers have cut back their Black Friday discounts in the face of recession.

coins spilling out from a jar

Following recent economic turmoil, 70% of UK marketers have been forced to change their Black Friday discounts, plans and deals.

That is according to a study from Optimizely, a digital experience platform (DXP) provider enabling Boundless Digital Invention.

The research, which surveyed 100 in-house marketing professionals across the UK, also found that more than a third (35%) of those taking part in Black Friday have reduced the deals they will be offering in order to save on costs and boost profits.

Despite these cutbacks, the event is no less important to retailers with two in five marketers (40%) agreeing that Black Friday will be “even more vital” due to the possibility of an economic recession. In fact, 50% of those surveyed are actually increasing their Black Friday marketing budgets in response to the economic downturn. Of these, 36% have invested more due to concerns about tightening belts and reduced consumer spending power.

Optimizely’s research also examined how marketers plan to make the most of this event, and how they plan to drive business results in the potentially challenging year ahead.

Three quarters (76%) of marketers said that customer experience will be an ‘essential’ part of their marketing strategy in the year ahead — more than any other factor. Over half (55%) also agreed that personalisation technology will remain an essential element in their plans for reaching consumers.

With these technologies to hand, a massive 97% of UK marketers say that – despite economic instability – they still feel positive about their ability to deliver effective marketing in 2023.

Shafqat Islam, GM of Optimizely, said: “Between the cost-of-living crisis, talk of recession, and the recent budget changes, there’s no denying that the UK has seen some turmoil in the last few months. However, even in the face of this uncertainty, marketers are feeling positive about the year ahead and are proactively making changes to meet any challenges head on.

Today’s marketers are under more pressure than ever to prove their worth and add business value, particularly during a busy period like the holiday season. With reduced consumer spending power, the most effective marketers will be those who remain focused on customer experiences and ensuring that shoppers find the right products for them. Personalisation and optimisation will play a vital part in this goal and the technologies that enable them will be just as important as ever in the year ahead.”

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