According to, this year’s Black Friday in Hungary will be an exciting experiment: so far it had been the big day for webshops, but now most regular shops are planning huge sales for this day, too. Consumers’ routines have changed, but we are still far from the obsession Black Friday means in the West.

In Hungary, Black Friday is the big day of webhops, but this year, more traditional shops join the initiative. Anyhow, companies need to work a lot on marketing if they want people to consciously prepare for this day.

The root of the problems is that it is unclear which day is supposed to be Black Friday. In the American culture it is obvious: the Friday following Thanksgiving, the 24th of November this year. But in Hungary there were many stores that started the sales already on the previous Friday. Not as if customers cared too much about the exact date of Black Friday.

According to calculation by György Vámos, Secretary General of the Hungarian Trade Association,

even one-third of the whole November income can be produced this day.

Depending on the sales, the total income can even reach 10 billion HUF. The big question is, however, whether people actually spend more money or just do the usual Christmas shopping a little earlier.

Data from the Central Statistics Office show the same picture every year up until 2016: after the shopping rush after school has started, people do less shopping by November, then another rush comes in December. Last year the situation was different, it was the first year when more people visited stores not only in December, but November too. More processes suggest that customer’s habits are changing:

  • In Hungarian retail, November was the second strongest month in 2016 regarding sales (not counting food products). This has no precedent, moreover November used to be a weaker month, regarding sales.
  • In package sending services and online shops the change had started earlier, there only sales in December are higher than November. Quantity increased too: in 2013, 13 billion HUF was spent on online shopping and package spending, by last year this number has grown to 32 billion.
  • Central Statistics Office counts furniture and technical products together, here quite a change is visible: since 2014, sales increased drastically.
  • There is no change in the sales of IT product in the previous years.
  • The sales in December are increasing as well, so we cannot state that customers simply do the Christmas shopping a bit earlier, because of Black Friday.

As eNet Internet researcher found out, this year more than 1.5 times more people plan to buy something on Black Friday: 3.3 million people want to get something for a cheaper price this year, while last year only 2.1 did.

On average, they plan to spend 36 thousand HUF, meaning a 120 billion HUF income in one day.

This will probably not be realised, still the increase can be seen in the numbers.

Still, Hungarians are not as excited about Black Friday as Americans. Only one out of four internet users prepares consciously for the sales, and 20% just take a quick look at the products. In Hungary, Black Friday is the ‘big day’ of online shopping, while overseas it just goes out of fashion that stores expect customers by opening already at midnight.

It is also worth for stores to join Black Friday. The number of customers walking into shops can be ten times as big as on other days, and the sales may attract more people to return to the shops later.


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