Black Friday and Cyber Monday - how can online retailers make the most of them?

Fatih-Kağan Taşkoparan

Share this article

Every year, Black Friday at the end of November heralds the hottest phase of pre-Christmas online shopping. The coming weeks promise a true paradise for bargain hunters. High season for online retailers and logistics! We have compiled the most important key figures and information for you on how online retailers can make the most of these special shopping days for themselves and their online store.

The hype from the USA

Created as the start of a long shopping weekend for Americans, Black Friday has been firmly established in the retail sector since the 1980s and is characterized above all by discount campaigns and special opening hours for stores. It always takes place on the fourth Friday in November and heralds the start of the Christmas shopping season in the United States after Thanksgiving. With Cyber Monday, a counterpart to Black Friday was also created specifically for online retail.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are also very popular in Germany. According to a survey conducted by the German Retail Association in 2022 According to the study, 96% of German consumers surveyed are familiar with Black Friday and around 82% with Cyber Monday, which is important for online retail. However, both shopping events are relatively new phenomena on the German retail scene - although they are well known - and only found their way onto the German market in the 2010s.

Black Friday - can I use the term freely as a retailer?

There has always been uncertainty as to whether the term "Black Friday" is a freely usable term for all retailers or whether this term is protected by trademark law. The trademark "Black Friday" has been registered in the German trademark register for around 900 registered goods and services since 2013. This resulted in repeated warnings to retailers who used the term to advertise their own products.

In the meantime, however, there is finally certainty about the facts, because the Federal Court of Justice has ordered the cancellation of the registered trademark . The German Trademark and Patent Office had also already ordered the cancellation in 2018, as both the Patent Office and the Federal Court of Justice argue with the so-called forecast decision: This means that there were already sufficient indications at the time of the trademark application in 2013 that the term Black Friday would develop into a generally accepted catchphrase for discount campaigns in retail. With this decision, the term can now be used freely and at will by all retailers.

Numbers do not lie

If you look at the annual statistics for the two shopping events in Germany, it becomes clear that the discount campaigns have a positive impact on the retail sector: spending on the two events amounted to a total of 1.7 billion euros in 2016. But the really interesting thing here is the exponential development of annual spending: While German consumers spent a total of 3.8 billion euros in 2020, by 2022 this figure had risen to around 5.6 billion euros increased.

But caution is also required: The inflation crisis and generally cautious consumer behavior are not sparing shopping campaigns. In view of the economic uncertainties, rising cost of living and high price sensitivity when shopping, experts expect an increase of just 0.2% in 2023 compared to the previous years, when sales were strong. This makes it all the more important for online retailers to prepare their online store in the best possible way for potential buyers. We have summarized the most important tips for you here.

This helps your online store performance in the long term

Which factors influence your online store's performance the most during Black Friday and Cyber Monday? Consumers are influenced by several psychological factors when making a purchase, so we have created an overview of the most important components for you here:

  • Store design and UX

The operation of your online store is the be-all and end-all. A clever website design that is easy to use and inviting will pick up your customers exactly where it counts. A simple structure and a sensible design with a pleasant color scheme help shape your customers' shopping experience and user experience!

  • Landing page

Create a separate landing page for your Black Friday offers to provide a better overview.

  • The power of contrast

Position very inexpensive and expensive products next to each other in your view. This will stimulate your customer's thought process and suggest cost savings for choosing the cheaper product.

  • Sense of urgency

Use temporary, i.e. time-limited, offers and encourage your customers to take advantage of them now. You can also support this process by integrating a timer on your website, for example.

  • Avoid purchase barriers

Use optimized purchasing processes, for example through the "One Click to Buy" function or a checkout process that is as simple as possible. The integration of as many payment providers as possible also supports this process.

  • Additional offers

Also try to integrate additional offers into your store. For example, use competitions, post social media posts with promo and discount codes or reward your customers with loyalty points.