Black Friday spending expected to decline by almost a quarter this year

Shoppers are expected to rein in their spending by almost a quarter this Black Friday, reveals a poll by PwC.

The research anticipates UK consumers will spend £5.6 billion on Black Friday deals this year – down from £7.1 billion last year. The event’s timing ahead of payday as well as cost of living pressures are thought to be the main reasons behind the slow down.

Interest surrounding the event is also thought to be declining, with only 16 per cent of shoppers saying they will “definitely buy” compared with 24 per cent last year. Meanwhile, the percentage of those who don’t intend to take part in the bargain bonanza this year has increased from 30 per cent in 2022 to 56 per cent.  

The main reasons for the drop in interest varies by age group, but older generations said they are more likely to be prioritising holidays and leisure spending. Meanwhile, families said they are cutting back on spending altogether. Those in the Generation Z age group said they don’t have enough money to purchase anything this year.

“Shoppers are telling us they want to spend less this Black Friday for a number of reasons,” says Lisa Hooker, leader of industry for consumer markets at PwC UK. “For many, purse strings are a little tighter this time around, with the improvement in consumer sentiment we saw earlier in the year having slowed over the summer.

“Finally, the timing of Black Friday a little earlier this year and before payday for many people will inevitably have an impact on spending.”

“Looking forward, consumers still prioritise special occasions and time with family, which means that we are still optimistic about the outlook for retailers this Christmas.

“Indeed, over one third of shoppers tell us they have started Christmas shopping earlier, with many of them doing so in order to help with budgeting for the festive period.”