A guide to Japanese sales events: October to December 2019

As summer comes to an end, the weather begins to cool down in Japan and people begin to prepare for the winter ahead of them as well as the multiple holidays soon to come. Sellers should also be preparing for the winter ahead in terms of sponsored ads they might want to run to promote their brand during this period. However, before the heat fades away is Taiiku no Hi, so for those selling sports equipment on Amazon, this national holiday may provide some extra sales or publicity especially with schools and companies. October also brings Halloween and with it comes the opportunity to advertise and sell costumes, Halloween decorations and sweets, yet trick or treating is not a popular past time so avoid any marketing around doing so. A new holiday that has gained some traction in recent years particularly in Tokyo is Singles Day so vendors selling cosmetic items and gifts may want to consider advertising their products for this day. Another event that has gained momentum in Japan is Black Friday and Cyber Monday although Japan hasn’t fully understood the idea yet, so Amazon sellers may want to consider if they want to advertise around this time or not. However, in December comes the Christmas and New Year End sales, a massive time for all companies to create their sales campaigns especially when considering employees receive their winter bonuses around this time as well. Finally, companies might want to also consider their stock levels due to the number of holidays in this quarter of the year especially considering Oseibo gifts will also be popular as well as party supplies to celebrate the end of the year.

  • Taiiku no Hi (Health & Sports day) – Celebrated on the 2nd Monday of October. A national holiday celebrated worldwide to commemorate the anniversary of the 1964 Olympic games in Tokyo. Competitions and games are organised in schools and businesses. Products such as sports equipment, sports clothing and drinks will sell well.
  • Halloween – Celebrated on 31st October. Trick or Treating is not popular, however. Children and adult costumes, themed decorations and chocolate/candy sells well.
  • Singles Day – Celebrated on the 11th November. Originally a Chinese holiday, it celebrates the pride of being single as well as being in a relationship. It is similar to Valentine’s day. Chocolate/candy and personalised gifts usually sell well.
  • Black Friday –Will commence on the 29th November 2019. Discounts on loads of products ranging from electronics, clothing and health and beauty. You name it, you can probably sell it on this day.
  • Cyber Monday – Will begin on the 2nd December 2019. Same as Black Friday but specifically for spending online. Whatever you are selling, it is worth promoting it this day.
  • Christmas – Celebrated on 25th December. A time to spread happiness rather than any religious connotation. Christmas Eve is seen as a romantic time for couples. Romantic products such as flowers, personalised gifts and chocolate/candy sells well.
  • Oseibo (end of the year gift giving) - In Kanto region, it can be celebrated from 1st December to 25th December. Elsewhere it can last from 13th December to 25th December. Presents are usually given to the people that have helped the gift giver throughout the year. Personalised gifts, in particular sell well during this period.
  • Bonenkai – An end of the year party to ‘forget the year’ usually by drinking a lot of alcohol with friends or co-workers. Those selling alcohol (provided that it conforms to the Liquor Tax Act ), party supplies and party games will sell well during this season.
  • New Year & Year End thanks sale - A sales campaign to usually sell products that are out of season such as summer clothes and picnic supplies.