This holiday, shoppers swapped shopping trips for clicks.
Thanksgiving Day garnered about $1.73 billion in online spending, a 25 percent increase from last year. And, on Black Friday, about $822 million was spent by 11 a.m., a 15 percent increase from last year. Conversely, brick-and-mortar sales fell to $12.1 billion during the two days.
Analytics company comScore predicted shoppers will spend $70 billion online this holiday season, with mobile commerce totaling $11.7 billion of retail spending, growing at a rate of 47 percent versus last season and worth 17 percent of total digital commerce.
This robs retailers of the opportunity to sell to impulse buyers and instead subsidize shipping costs for them.“This day is going to be a disappointing day,” Simeon Siegel, an analyst at Nomura, told Bloomberg. “If you have the right products, you can win, but it’s a tougher environment.”
Some studies, however, predicted shoppers to give up on Black Friday deals altogether. One from CivicScience indicated that 81 percent of respondents were “not at all likely” to shop on Black Friday this year (an increase from 78 percent in 2014), while another from Ibotta showed that 57 percent of shoppers planned to do most of their shopping after Black Friday, with 49 percent expecting the best deals at that time.
But the numbers lay out the real story. Sarah Quinlan, SVP of market insights at MasterCard Advisors, expects that sales from this year’s shopping bonanza will jump at least 4 percent compared to 2014. And merchants will be working harder than ever to capture consumers’ hearts, minds and pocketbooks.
“Merchants are using methods, especially online, to curate what that offer will be to drive sales, whether it’s in-store or online,” Quinlan stated, pointing out that Black Friday is now more of a tool merchants use to signify to consumers: “It’s the holiday season, start thinking about it, let’s go shopping and come with me.”