Retailers' websites are struggling to keep up with demand from shoppers hunting for mega-deals on Black Friday.
Customers have been unable to access the deals being offered by Tesco, Argos and Currys with their websites returning error messages due to the high volume of visitors just days before "Cyber Monday" when online deals are expected to be even bigger.
Currys cited “huge demand” for deals on its website currys.co.uk, placing customers in a queue and detailing how long they would have to wait - around 10 to 20 minutes early this morning.
On Argos.co.uk, visitors were met with the message: “We’re currently experiencing a very high volume of visitors to our website.To ensure everyone can enjoy the best shopping experience, we're limiting the number of additional visitors entering the site at the moment. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. Please try again in a few minutes.”
Shoppers on Tesco Direct’s Black Friday deals page were greeted with a “Sorry for making you wait” message at around eight o’clock this morning, however the page was later up and running.
Other retailers, such as Asda and Sainsbury’s, avoided the same online issues by offering deals only in stores today and tomorrow before Cyber Monday, however retailers have been besieged by crowds of bargain-hunting shoppers at locations across the country.
Police were called to shops in London and Manchester where scuffles broke out and overcrowding caused heated altercations among shoppers and shop staff.