Exertis ready for “manic” Black Friday as orders jump by 60,000

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Distributor, specialising in IT, telecom and consumer electronics fulfilment is expecting up to 60,000 additional orders tomorrow (November 27)

Exertis is bracing itself for up to 60,000 additional shipments through its warehouses on Black Friday with some retailers predicting sales to be up to 100 per cent higher than a year ago.

The distributor, which has more than 22,850 resellers has been forced to bring in additional staff to cope with the extra demand, as fulfilment partners including Argos, Amazon and ShopDirect embrace the US born phenomenon (now in its second year in the UK) by cutting product prices.

Exertis UK sales director Simon Woodman told Mobile News on average, the distributor ships around 48,000 orders every day. However that number is expected to top 100,000 on Black Friday, with above average orders set to continue through the weekend to Cyber Monday.

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Woodman said Exertis has been preparing for the rush since the start of October, buying in extra stock and ensuring suitable staff numbers are present (no figures given) as more and more of its customers embrace the flash-sale craze.

“It’s a very busy time for us and for our partners,” said Woodman. “Talking to Amazon, they’re expecting it [Black Friday] to be two to three times bigger than it was last year and if you talk to any of the major retailers they’ll tell you its going to be anywhere between 50 per cent to 100 per cent bigger. That whole weekend should drive 20 per cent of the quarter sales for many retailers.

“For us we have been shipping in bulk stock beginning of October, so we have planned in advance and we are ready for it.”

All about profit this year 

Whilst the number of partners embracing Black Friday and the rush of customers it provides, Woodman believes a number of lessons have been learned by the industry from a year ago.

He described the 2014 event as a race to the bottom for some online and high street retailers, whereas this year will still be focussed on volumes, but more so this time around in retaining a profit, no matter how minimal.

“The key differentiator this time, is that last year was very much around being the loss-leader,” said Woodman. “This year everyone wants to do it, but wants it to be profitable business. I don’t think you will see the deals being as racy as last year and a lot of people have learned subsiding products and driving the crazy levels of demand doesn’t do their profitability any good whatsoever.”

He added he expects the most “significant” bargains to come from the likes of TV’s, computers and audio equipment rather than on mobile phones. O2, Vodafone and Motorola have since launched their own Black Friday deals.

“It’s not really the mobile guys,” said Woodman. “Some of the second tiers players have done some deals but the big brands don’t play, your Samsung’s and Apple’s unless the networks are going to subsidise it themselves. It’s really more around the IT and consumer electronics, the laptops, tablets to a degree and then TV’s and audio equipment.”

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