WA shoppers are tipped to spend $560 million in the next four days as Black Friday sales fever kicks in.
Nationally, $5.6 billion is expected to be spent between Friday and Monday, according to the National Retail Association. Big retailers hit by the effects of lockdowns in the Eastern States are using the period to try to lure shoppers back to stores.
This means WA shoppers who have largely been able to shop without restrictions for much of the year are expected to reap the benefit.
Curtin University retail and consumer psychology expert Billy Sung expected higher disposable incomes — fuelled by many people being unable to travel — to lead to stronger results for retailers in WA this year.
National Retail Association chief executive Dominique Lamb said the $5.6b expected was an 8 per cent increase on last year.
National Australia Bank expects almost $1m a minute nationally, and nearly $600m in WA will be spent between Friday and Monday.
Its data from last year showed residents in the Stirling, Wanneroo and Joondalup local government areas were the biggest spenders in the four day buying bonanza.
“One in six of all November retail sales happened during this four-day period last year and we’re anticipating similar trends this year as the economic bounce back continues,” bank group executive for personal banking, Rachel Slade, said.
The Commonwealth Bank reported sales up 14 per cent nationally for the four days last year compared to 2019. Based on previous years, it expects clothing and cosmetics retailers to be the biggest winners.
Dr Sung predicted the push to encourage local shopping to counter expected logistics and supply crunches, to drive shoppers into bricks and mortar retail. And though Black Friday had its origins in e-commerce, the psychological lure of a bargain made it difficult to ignore physical stores, he said.
At Raine Square in the CBD, fashion retailer Hypnotise will hold its first Black Friday sale this year.
Given the store doesn’t have sales outside of Boxing Day, co-owner Kelly Kueh expects Black Friday to be popular.
“This is like a treat for our customers,” she said.
Ms Kueh also hopes the sale will drive increased foot traffic to the city, after the seven-year-old business moved from Northbridge in February.
“I’m feeling positive; since the Christmas lights went up, people are getting that Christmas crunch and feeling it and freaking out a little bit,” she said. “They’re putting their head in to see if they can buy for family and friends already.
“I’m feeling very hopeful and positive and feeling very normal compared to last year when people were unsure.”