A document breaking cyber week continues with a $ 9 billion Black Friday
It was perhaps a Thanksgiving week without many of the typical traditions for many Americans – trips and big gatherings to start with. But there are some rituals that even a pandemic cannot break, and Black Friday shopping is one of them.
Americans spent a record $ 9 billion online on Black Friday this year, according to data provider Adobe Analytics. This is a 21.6% increase from 2019, when consumers spent $ 7.4 billion. The final numbers were in line with Adobe's projections that estimated spending on Friday lunchtime Black Friday was between $ 8.9 billion and $ 9.6 billion. Some estimates put Black Friday spending at $ 10 billion, which was slightly below that.
40% of purchases – $ 3.6 billion – were made through smartphones, up 23% year over year.
These numbers make Black Friday 2020 the second largest online shopping day in US history, after Cyber Monday in 2019.
According to Salesforce, Americans shopped 116.6 million hours online on Black Friday. According to Adobe Analytics data, consumers were spending $ 6.3 million per minute online on Black Friday, an average of $ 27.50 per person.
Despite the increase in activity and time expenditure, consumer offerings have not changed significantly. This year, the average Black Friday discount was 26%, according to Salesforce, as was 2019. The categories with the highest spending include toys and electronics.
The Black Friday sales boom was felt across the retail landscape, regardless of size. "Certain consumers are definitely (and) deliberately trying to help small and local retailers," said Vivek Pandya, Adobe senior digital insights manager. "But both sides of the retail industry have seen significant gains over that time."
This has been a great year for ecommerce Cyber Week sales. Since the pandemic forced people indoors and closed non-essential retailers in March, the adoption of online shopping has accelerated. For example, according to the US Census Bureau, e-commerce grew 36.7% year over year in the third quarter of 2020, while retail sales increased just 7% overall.
This record-breaking Black Friday follows a cyber week in which there were similarly large increases. According to Salesforce data, online sales in the US rose 72% on Tuesday this week, while sales rose 48% on Wednesday. Thanks to the year-over-year growth of 21.5%, it grew more slowly than at the beginning of the week.
All of November was a significant month of growth for online shopping. Consumers spent over $ 2 billion on 24 of the first 27 days of the month, with seven days exceeding $ 3 billion. If you put the numbers together, there were only three $ 3 billion days at this point in time.
The biggest sales day is likely to come. Adobe predicts Cyber Monday will be the biggest online sales day in US history, with an estimated spend of between $ 10.8 billion (up 15% year over year) and US $ 12.7 billion Dollars (a 35% year-over-year increase.)
How consumers and retailers prepare for the holidays
The impact of the pandemic on this year's Black Friday results is multifaceted. As the number of cases in the United States continues to rise, more Americans have been putting their vacation shopping online.
"With cases rising, people are trying to store goods they need when they close the hatches for that particular season," Pandya said. "(That) really raised the level of spending."
With the rise in online orders, retailers are preparing for a more difficult season related to order fulfillment and shipping. A problem that, according to Pandya, may have worked in favor of Black Friday. Since consumers are aware of the challenges retailers face on this vacation, they are more likely to be more inclined to make a purchase early in the season.