Black Friday in South Africa evolved into Black November and Transaction Junction processed billions of Rands of transactions, despite the challenges created by Covid-19.

Black Friday has a reputation for being all about huge sales, massive crowds, and utter madness at the tills. However, with the world still reeling under the impact of Covid-19 in the lead up to this unique day, many retailers were concerned about just how successful the event would be in 2020. Fortunately for these businesses, new payment methods and an increase in online transaction methods played a role in ensuring that what has been an increasingly popular promotion in recent years continued in the same, successful vein.

According to Craig Duggan, Commercial Head at Transaction Junction, a fintech company that specialises in digital payment solutions for the future, South African businesses have – in previous years – struggled to deal with the customer volumes they face on Black Friday. It is for this reason that most often, the sales specials associated with the day are spread out over a longer period. “It evolved into more of a Black November, which reduced the pressure on retailers’ payment platforms and meant that their systems were less likely to crash.”

“Transaction Junction is well positioned to provide feedback on the November sales this year. While we did not necessarily see a huge increase in transactions on Black Friday itself, we definitely witnessed a sustained rate of transactions on the day of over 100 transactions per second (TPS) on our platform.”

Duggan points out that for the entire month of November, however, success can be measured in the billions. “Transaction Junction’s platform processed just short of R2.8 billion worth of transactions, from a total number of nearly 180 million undertaken.”

“There is little doubt that we experienced a bullish November, not only in terms of the number and value of the transactions processed, but also, we did not experience a single minute of downtime. Further, our year-on-year merchant acquisition numbers are up by some 60%, since an increasing number of retailers are recognising the benefits of our integrated, client-facing solutions, which eliminate the need for physical handling of point of sale (PoS) devices.” “Add to this our diversification and move into an omni-channel platform, and it is no surprise that Transaction Junction had an exceptionally good year. I put our success down to our ability to deliver services across diverse channels, as well as the sheer quality of the overall platform. November may have been ‘black’ for some, but our experiences throughout the month were the exact opposite,” he concludes.