“Even though physical stores remain open during the current quarantine, most preparation for the weekend of promotions is done online. And this is no surprise. The outbreak of COVID-19 has facilitated a transition to e-commerce and e-payments at a speed we had not previously witnessed during our 16 years in business. Already on the second weekend in November, we recorded a higher overall turnover in the Baltic e-shops than on the Black Friday weekend in 2019,” says Marius Pareščius, Vice President of the payment operator Paysera, which helps to collect buyers’ e-payments for the majority of Lithuanian e-shops.

The online payment processor has calculated that during the Black Friday weekend in 2019, buyers spent approximately 55% more money in Baltic e-shops than in 2018. Similar growth is expected on the upcoming weekend.

“We expect that the growth in the Baltic e-shops this year will be similar and will reach 50–60%. There are several reasons to think that. First, the number of offers to buy online will be much higher because, this year, thousands of small merchants have opened their e-stores or started their trade in the Marketplace. Second, people will spend more money on purchases because they spend less on vacation and leisure. And third, during this sensitive period, the process of buying and unwrapping a purchase from its packaging simply feels good,” claims M. Pareščius, and adds that a sudden increase in the number of goods to be delivered still remains a challenge for courier companies, and therefore it is likely that some of the goods will be delivered later than the agreed time.

Marius Pareščius
Foto: Asmeninio archyvo nuotr.

The market leader Pigu.lt also predicts a growth in e-commerce and record sales. Ernestas Kačerauskas, the company’s head of marketing, states that this should be the biggest Black Friday in the Baltics. According to him, over 1,200 merchants alone, which have supplemented the range of over a million goods with an additional 200 thousand goods, are ready for trade in the online shopping centre owned by the company.

“In spring, at the very peak, we recorded an approximate 80 per cent increase in sales at Pigu.lt. Sales also grew in Latvia and Estonia. This Singles’ Day (11 November) alone has surpassed last year’s Black Friday in all numbers – customers, goods, and sellers. We have calculated that our e-commerce platform customers in the three Baltic states purchased over 50 thousand goods that day. It is clear that the upcoming Black Friday will be a record one. We and hundreds of shops in our shopping centre will pull out their best offers for customers,” E. Kačerauskas, head of Pigu.lt marketing, shares his predictions.