As snowfall and rail strikes are affecting everyone’s commute this week, VI’s Christmas Consumer Index is looking back on the results of Black Friday. With sales promotions being extended through Cyber Monday, we would like to provide an in-depth look at sector performance during this 4-day sales weekend.  

First, let’s look at Year on Year performance across the Benchmarks:

Cardiff saw the highest YoY increase in footfall last week with a 12% increase. Encouragingly, around three-quarters of all city centres included in the research saw WoW increases, in particular Leeds (17%) and Liverpool (10%). London West End had the highest uptick from the week prior however with a 20% increase. 

Town centres had minor increases and supermarkets continued to improve on their footfall performance versus last year, albeit far less strongly than last week. Lidl continues to be the top performing supermarket with a 33% YoY increase.

There were signs of encouragement for department stores. Harrods and Selfridges both saw increases in footfall from last week (42% and 51% respectively). Outlet centres struggled again, but Bridgend has continued to perform well this week seeing a 40% YoY increase, mirroring Cardiff’s strong performance.


We can see in the graph below the positive impact Black Friday has had in attracting consumers into major city centres versus previous weeks, to take advantage of attractive deals at big-name brands and department stores.

As previously stated, Leeds (17%), Liverpool (10%) and London West End (20%) saw the biggest increases. Bath and Manchester saw 10% and 8% increases respectively, and these figures will provide a welcome boost to city centres as they try to navigate consumers reluctance in spending. Contrary to recent trends shown in our CCI, cities outside of England looked to struggle when compared to strong performance in previous weeks.

Additionally, in terms of major shopping centres in the UK, the largest increases of WoW footfall traffic were seen at Eldon Square, Newcastle (10%), The Oracle, Reading (9%), and Union Square, Aberdeen (7%).