7 charts on Black Friday trends in the Middle East and North Africa

07 December 2021 Consultancy-me.com 4 min. read
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The 2021 edition of Black Friday is – as anticipated – the largest ever in the Middle East. Seven charts by RedSeer Consulting on some of the event’s key consumer trends and purchases.

Total turnover for Black Friday in the Middle East and North Africa is forecasted to amount to just under $6 billion this year, a major 25% to 30% growth on the previous year.

Black Friday Revenue MENA

Growth in Black Friday sales however will be considerably lower to last year, when the shopping extravaganza saw a whopping 90% growth year on year, as pent-up demand from the muted Ramadan sales period (which was impacted by supply chain disruptions owing to the pandemic) played out aggressively during Black Friday.

Historically, electronics is the most popular category for purchase during Black Friday. More recently though, consumers have started shopping for a lot more categories from online channels thanks to the newly instilled confidence from the pandemic driven online dependency. This is being reflected in the Black Friday category mix:

Black Friday Sales Mix

Sector appeal slightly varies among the different generations with Gen Z being most inclined towards fashion this Black Friday. These youngsters looked for buying trendy and branded clothes at a bargain. Gen Y on the other hand leads adoption in electronics and beauty & personal care.

Black Friday Sector Adoption – Age Cut

Looking at the top-selling categories, then Gen X has the highest adoption for skincare products among beauty & personal care products. On the other hand, Gen Y and Gen Z have higher intent to buy casual wear this Black Friday and trendier purchases. Gen Y also seems to have splashed out more this year, driving the sales of more expensive categories as mobile and laptop purchases.

Black Friday Category Adoption – Age Cut

While Black Friday is traditionally associated with high discounts, consumers are increasingly buying products and experiences for other more qualitative reasons including – offer variety, gifting, and product exclusivity.

Motivation to Buy During Black Friday

For Gen Z consumers, offers on products is by far the most important criteria, with the online channel used for extensive research. However, the myth that the online space is strictly for younger generations is debunked according to RedSeer Consulting, as more Gen X and Gen Y consumers seek better online deals.

Black Friday Perception – Age Cut

Consumers are increasingly using retailer/brand apps to discover products during Black Friday. Within social media, new channels such as short form video (TikTok) are growing fast while Facebook and Google product discovery ecosystems continue to be strong.

Preferred Media Channel For Product Discovery On Black Friday

About Black Friday

Nowadays a global feast, Black Friday initially originated in the US as a shopping feast in the run-up to Thanksgiving holiday. It is a day full of special shopping deals and big discounts and is considered the beginning of the holiday shopping season.

The shopping festival was first organised in the Middle East as a 3-day event by Souq (now Amazon) a few years ago. The event has become so popular in the region that around 20% of annual online retail sales are generated during the Black Friday sale period, which has meanwhile (at many retailers and e-commerce groups) expanded to a period several weeks in the fourth quarter.