Although Black Friday 2021 didn’t break last year’s records, its role as the most popular sales moment in the Netherlands and Belgium has been confirmed once again. The number of click-outs went through the roof (179% more than in a normal week), more was spent per deal and Bol.com and Amazon competed for the largest market share.

Thanks to the Tweakers Pricewatch, we were able to keep an eye on exactly what was happening. And how Black Friday fared this year compared to last year. We have set out the most eye-catching data in the overview below. Want to check it out?

Click below on the trend you want to read more about:

  • 1. More click-outs compared to average week (in percentages)
  • 2. Fewer click-outs compared to last year (in numbers)
  • 3. Unfair: 2020 was an exceptional year
  • 4. Prices rising all the time
  • 5. Bol.com trumps Amazon
  • 6. Televisions the most popular category
  • 7. Good deals on TVs, headphones and Solid State Drives (SSDs)
  • 8. Laptops were disappointing
  • 9. Shifts in purchasing behaviour
  • 10. Consumers wait until Black Friday & Cyber Monday to purchase

1. More click-outs compared to average week (in percentages)

Compared to an average week, during Black Friday there were 179% more click-outs on Tweakers in the Netherlands and 207.4% more in Belgium. In percentage terms, that is slightly more than last year and much more than in 2019. There were also more clicks in Belgium, but the difference with 2019 is less significant. The data is slightly different for Hardware Info, where the numbers were less spectacular, also in comparison with the past 2 years.

2. Fewer click-outs compared to last year (in numbers)

In percentage terms, the figures were favourable, but in absolute numbers of click-outs we saw a lower peak for the first time in the Netherlands and Belgium. This applies to both Tweakers and Hardware Info. In the Netherlands, for example, there were 10.6% fewer clicks than during Black Friday 2020 and 18% fewer in Belgium. However, there was growth if we disregard 2020 due to the exceptional circumstances. Compared to 2019, there were a lot more clicks in the Pricewatch this year: 16.4% more in the Netherlands and 4% more in Belgium. Only Hardware Info is lagging behind here; its figures were significantly higher in 2019.

3. Unfair: 2020 was an exceptional year

It’s not entirely surprising that last year's levels weren’t reached. Due to a complete lockdown during that period, most Dutch and Belgian consumers were at home and no money was spent on holidays. In addition, manufacturers and suppliers had to contend with supply problems this year due to chip shortages, which meant that fewer products were on offer. These supply problems also existed in 2020, but fewer shops were open due to the lockdown and stocks could be distributed more easily.

This translated into fewer page views, visitors and click-outs than in 2020.

4. Prices rising all the time

In the Netherlands, the average purchase price of the deals this year was 0.33% higher than in 2020 and in Belgium 6.4% higher. Compared to 2019, this percentage was even significantly higher – at 21.3% in the Netherlands and 22.7% in Belgium. The average discount percentage of the deals in both the Netherlands and Belgium was around 30%, just as in previous years.

In the run-up to Black Friday, the number of deals increased, but in the end there were fewer deals in total than last year. This is probably a result of the supply problems and chip shortages. For that reason, many manufacturers and suppliers chose to give discounts on fewer products. The number of deals was higher than in 2019.

5. Bol.com trumps Amazon

This year’s figures in the Pricewatch show that Bol.com won the battle for market share during Black Friday against competitor Amazon. Whereas Amazon was the largest last year with a 0.24% difference, it was clearly trumped by Bol.com this year. In the Netherlands, the difference in Bol.com’s favour was 5.41% and in Belgium 7.33%.

By way of comparison, in a normal week the difference in market share in the Pricewatch between the two parties is around 3% in favour of Bol.com.

However, Amazon does come out as the winner if you omit the marketplaces of both parties. In other words, Amazon is bigger if we look only at their own store. With this achievement, the company is putting its stamp on the market even more, much more than it has been doing this year.

6. Televisions the most popular category

Televisions were again the most popular product category during Black Friday, just like last year. Of all the click-outs, 10.42% involved a television. This is what we expected: last year the number of click-outs in this category was slightly higher at 10.75%.

Our research in collaboration with Newcom shows that many consumers wait for a discount period, such as Black Friday, to buy a television. About 40% of Dutch consumers say that they wait to make the purchase, while this number is even slightly higher in Belgium (47%). We see different figures among the Tweakers community members. There, a smaller percentage of Dutch consumers (32%) wait for a period like Black Friday. In Belgium, the percentage is 38%.

7. Good deals on TVs, headphones and Solid State Drives (SSDs)

There were many good deals to be scored in the categories TVs, headphones and SSDs. Especially the LG C1 OLED series resulted in lots of clicks in the Pricewatch. This is clearly visible in the Top 5 most popular products during Black Friday (see below).

8. Laptops were disappointing

The laptop category was disappointing this year. Manufacturers and retailers gave fewer discounts on their products and also gave discounts only on less powerful laptops. Whereas not long ago you could buy a laptop with a series 5 processor, now it has a series 3 in it. That was the case even though the laptop category on all platforms (Tweakers NL and BE and Hardware Info) was extremely popular and attracted more clicks in terms of percentage than last year.

9. Shifts in purchasing behaviour

The past is no guarantee for the future and the same applies to Black Friday. Monitors are less popular than last year, while laptops are more popular. Processors, wireless speakers and video cards didn't even make it into the Top 10 this year, while they were very popular last year. Home cinema and audio, smartwatches and motherboards have actually increased in popularity compared to 2020.

Special Interest Media sales director Bart Zoetmulder has an explanation for this: “In our view, this is really an effect of the pandemic. Video cards, processors and monitors were especially popular last year because of working from home and the lockdown effect of the curfew. Now you see the shift to products in the nice-to-have category rather than the need-to-have category.”

10. Consumers wait until Black Friday & Cyber Monday to purchase

The conversions are fairly stable compared to the period before Black Friday. We do see that in the weeks before Black Friday, people are more cautious about purchasing. They probably wait until Black Friday before purchasing a product because the conversion increases again during the Black Friday week.

View the infographic for a complete overview of the data:

 

 

 

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