Blog » Payfast tracks R600k Black Friday spend

Payfast tracks R600k Black Friday spend

Payment platform Payfast reported a record-high Black Friday payment, with one individual spending R627 000 in one transaction. Other insights include the average basket size, which was R1 364, lower than 2022, which recorded an average of R1 689 per basket. Retailers with general merchandise or convenience food stores, family clothing stores and discount stores came out on top as people stocked up on essentials and treats alike, after a tough financial year, with men’s and women’s clothing stores coming in close behind.

“Experienced Black Friday enthusiasts now approach the day with a meticulously crafted strategy, pre-selecting desired products and leveraging price reductions weeks before the retail event kicks off. With access to platforms that monitor item products over time, shoppers can gain valuable insights into price fluctuations throughout the year, and gauge whether their wish-listed products really are at a good price. It’s no longer just about shopping – it’s a strategic approach,” says Payfast Managing Director, Brendon Williamson. 

Other trends picked up on the day include an uptake in QR code payments, with the volume of payments made using solutions like Zapper increasing by 63%, compared to 2022. Scan to Pay facilitated payments also increased by 44%. This highlights a key trend towards quicker and more convenient payments, that facilitate a seamless checkout experience.

“As the cost-of-living climbs, and inflation remains high, the choices around when and where to spend money have gained greater significance – particularly when considering significant purchases like appliances or electronics,” says Williamson.

Many retailers, like Superbalist, have been running Black Friday specials throughout the month of November, while others prefer to opt for a one-day sale on the day itself. Despite this, ecommerce spiked on 24 November, as retailers saved their best prices of the month for last. Payfast saw a peak in transactions between 9 and 10am, while some shoppers waited up until midnight to get their hands on their curated online baskets. 

“Black Friday has shifted predominantly towards online shopping, with numerous retailers offering exclusive online discounts. This transition offers consumers a more deliberate and curated shopping experience. Yet, as Black Friday becomes more commonplace, we might see merchants extending their sales period through to the festive season. This aims to attract a broader range of buyers and manage the surplus stock from Black Friday,” says Williamson. 

Payfast by Network is South Africa’s leading online payment platform. Founded in 2007, Payfast was acquired by Network International in 2019, joining forces with Paygate under Network’s ownership. Their cutting-edge payment solutions revolutionise the way that businesses process and accept payments. Serving 80 000 businesses, Payfast is dedicated to developing innovative payment solutions ensuring the highest level of convenience and trust for both merchants and customers alike. Their 2023 State of Pay industry report is available for download at: