Retail

Pre-Black Friday Online Sales Spike 17 Pct

U.S. consumers increased their online shopping by nearly 17 percent before Black Friday, according to new data published by Adobe Analytics this week. Online shopping spend topped $31.9 billion in the first 20 days of November, including the first “$2 billion day of the season,” analysts said. That day was Monday, Nov. 19.

Free shipping incentives helped fuel the spree, with Amazon waiving the non-Prime minimum of $25 for free shipping, and with a Target promotion offering free two-day shipping through Dec. 22 on select products.

Adobe Analytics predicted that U.S. online shoppers will spend $3.3 billion on Thanksgiving Day, a 16.5 percent year-over-year growth. Black Friday is expected to see $5.9 billion in sales, up 17.2 percent, and Cyber Monday to reach the peak at $7.8 billion in online sales, a 17.6 percent year-over-year growth rate. For the full season, the predictions reaffirm its previous estimates of $124.1 billion spent by U.S. online shoppers in November and December this year.

According to Bloomberg reports, Adobe Analytics looked at mobile devices, which are now the most popular platform for digital shopping. Mobile devices now account for nearly half of all visits to retail websites, researchers found.

On average, shoppers are seeing a 15 percent discount on computers and 12 percent off toys, these sales in line with previous years’ deals. The biggest promotional sales are still to come, though, Adobe Analytics added.

Online retailers have been pushing their holiday sales promotions earlier and earlier in recent years. This year, the sales launched on Thanksgiving, well ahead of the string of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday sales that holiday shoppers have come to know. While the Black Friday tradition was set by Macy’s, Amazon and the eCommerce boom pushed the holiday sales earlier in the year, despite Which? research that found the majority of holiday shoppers do most of their Christmas shopping between the last week of November and Christmas Eve.

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