Black Friday shopping began with fewer people lining up at stores. This suggests that retailers may have offered early discounts and that online shopping has taken over. According to CNBC , there were fewer shoppers in the shops as Black Friday shopping started. Spot checks revealed that there were fewer shoppers this holiday season, as retailers started offering discounts earlier than normal to compensate for the shorter holiday season. According to Adobe Analytics data, the holiday shopping season is starting well online. At 9:59 a.m. ET this morning, $600million had been spent online. This represents 19.2 percent year-over-year growth. The holiday season is showing 14.9 percent YoY growth. Between 11/1 and 11/28, $57.2 billion was spent online, which represents a comparable* rise of 16.0 percent YoY. The YoY growth calculation is made using an additional week from 2018, since Thanksgiving falls on a Tuesday this year.
Total Retail’s View: This slow start at brick-and mortar stores on Black Friday morning is indicative two trends. One, more shoppers prefer to shop online from their homes and not have to queue up in store. Black Friday is becoming an online shopping event similar to Cyber Monday, with many deals available online that match those in-store. Two, retailers are launching holiday deals more frequently in November, which is de-emphasizing Black Friday’s importance as the start of the holiday shopping season.
Black Friday Online Sales Up a Record 43%
Black Friday was the second most popular online day, with $7.40 billion spent by its end. The $7.40 billion figure represents a 43 percent increase year-over-year. The average order value for Black Friday was $168, a record setting figure that rose 5.9% year-over-year. Adobe also released the following holiday results:
- To pick up their goods, consumers flocked to brick and mortar stores. C Click-and-Collect Orders increased 43.2 percent over the previous year, which is a sign that online and offline retailers are successfully bridging these two markets.
- Black Friday was a record-breaking day for mobile shopping with sales of $2.9 billion from smartphones. A smartphone accounted for 39% of all ecommerce sales, an increase of 21 percent over 2018.
- Other smaller retailers saw success too, with nearly quadrupling revenue compared to the average day last month and a 140 per cent increase in sales between Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Although small retailers were more successful than large retailers in getting customers to add products to their carts (13 per cent better on mobile and 51 per cent better on desktop), large retailers were 60percent better at convincing consumers to make a purchase on the desktop.
- Cyber Monday will be the biggest online shopping day in American history. It is expected to generate $9.4 billion in sales and increase 18.9 percent year over year.
“BlackFriday broke all mobile shopping records with $2.9 billion in sales through smartphones alone,” stated Taylor Schreiner (principal analyst, head of Adobe Digital Insights). “Shoppers were buying almost 41 percent more online than they did in stores when they went to pick up their purchases,” said Taylor Schreiner, principal analyst and head of Adobe Digital Insights.
Total Retail’s Take: Does this mean that we won’t see people running around the mall trying to grab the hot holiday item of the year on Black Friday? It seems so. The foot traffic in malls and stores across the U.S. over the holiday weekend was not as strong this year, ShopperTrak (a division at Sensormatic Solutions) reported. Comparatively to last year, the number of shoppers who visited physical stores on Thanksgiving Day as well as Black Friday fell by 3 percent. While there was a 6.2% decline in Black Friday traffic compared to 2018, there was an increase of 2.3 percent in Thanksgiving Day traffic. There was also a slight shift in in-store traffic from the beginning to the end of the week into Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday. This dispels the notion that in-store visitors are moving away from the holiday and more into November.
Brian Field, ShopperTrak’s senior director of global retail consultancy, stated that Black Friday is still the busiest day to shop. Consumers still enjoy shopping in physical stores during holidays. Retailers are looking forward to a successful holiday season, with eight of the 10 busiest shopping days yet to come, including Super Saturday which falls on Dec. 21.
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