MENLYN Park Shopping Centre, and other malls in the city, were a hive of activity on Black Friday last year. A similar scenario is expected again on November 29 this year. African News Agency (ANA)

Pretoria - The Black Friday craze is expected to again take South Africa by storm as bargain buyers descend on shops.

The world’s most popular and biggest discount shopping has shown massive growth in South Africa.

“It is like being invited to a party,” Matthew Leighton, spokesperson of a South African leading e-tailor,, said.

Leighton said Black Friday on November 29 had become a big deal after following a trend started by the Americans.

“Black Friday is one of those things that got big in a short space of time and all of a sudden everyone in South Africa realised that Black Friday deals are a thing and now we just need to go out and find them,” he said.

Black Friday, which falls the day after the US’s Thanksgiving holiday, is characterised by huge discounts on deals.

“Black Friday may have started as a day where businesses pushed older stock for clearance purposes, but it has morphed into a standalone sales day driven by the fact that people know for certain that the very best deals are available,” Leighton said.

Online shopping in South Africa has grown tremendously over the years. The leading e-tailor made South African history last year when they offered the first 100%-off-price deals.

Black Friday Global, a retail tracker, said sales on the day in South Africa last year shot up by 19.52%.

“Know your websites,” Leighton has advised first-time online buyers and not-so-seasoned Black Friday shoppers.

He said the best way to plan shopping was to create an ordered list of the items you wanted from high priority to low. Pre-loading payment details a day before the chaotic day saved time.

PriceCheck, Africa’s largest product discovery and comparison service, said last year saw an increase of nearly 200% in its users day-on-day on Black Friday.

More than 82500 unique products were clicked over the Black Friday week, and more than 2.2million people used its comparison tool to help them choose products in their online shopping spree.

The company’s chief executive Chloe Lotter said comparison tools like PriceCheck were just as important to retailers as they were to consumers, particularly during periods of increased online spending like Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

“With the large discounts and small margins over the November period, retailers should rather look to use Black Friday as an opportunity to acquire new users, reactivate dormant users, and delight existing customers,” said Lotter.

While many consumers were prone to spend more impulsively on Black Friday, Lotter cautioned them to do their homework. Also, they should watch out for fraudulent offers, use safe payment methods, ensure the product was in stock, take note of delivery and return policies and keep an eye out for hidden costs. African News Agency

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