Thanksgiving looks a lot more like Christmas to PayPal these days. New stats released by the company showed a massive upswing in sales volume this year compared to last, with a 43 percent spike in mobile shopping on Thanksgiving day.
Altogether, PayPal has seen a 56 percent increase in global payments this year compared to 2013 figures. While the numbers didn’t quite reach last year’s levels – PayPal saw a 91 percent increase in mobile purchases from Thanksgiving 2012 to Thanksgiving 2013 – the company says this year’s data show promising trends for retailers.
PayPal’s head of global consumer initiatives, Pablo Rodriquez, says this year’s slowdown “speaks to the widening of the holiday shopping net or the holiday creep.” This year, the company says holiday shopping kicked off much earlier than Thanksgiving, launching around September 30. In turn, traditional Black Friday sales were also quick to get started. With holiday promotions shifting to earlier dates, Rodriquez says Thanksgiving day shopping stats are less indicative of year-to-year commerce trends.
So despite a less dramatic growth in PayPal usage this year, the company has still seen an impressive holiday shopping season so far. Several factors are at play when it comes to why PayPal continues to see such promising numbers.
For one, PayPal head of merchant communications Chris Morse says, consumers are shifting their habits when it comes to Black Friday. The shopping event used to signify camping out of brick-and-mortar stores, early mornings and a race to the aisles. This year, however, PayPal says it has seen more consumers taking advantage of online deals from the comfort and warmth of their homes.
PayPal’s tactic of partnering with companies like Virgin Mobile didn’t hurt, either, as consumers were offered steeper discounts for products when paying with PayPal. Plus, reports say, the emergence of Apple Pay has brought even more attention to the world of mobile payments. With more media attention on the technology, interest in services offered by companies like PayPal has only brought more customers.