Record-Setting Black Friday 2018 Nearly Sets U.S. Single-Day Online Sales Mark
The pace that was set on Thanksgiving Day very much carried over into Black Friday as consumers continued to open their digital wallets at a record-setting clip, according to the latest data from Adobe Analytics. The firm reported on Friday evening that consumers had spent $4.1 billion as of 8 p.m. Eastern Time, which represented 23.3 percent growth year over year, and spending was on pace to total more than $6.2 billion during the full 24-hour period across the country.
That figure would make Black Friday 2018 the second-biggest online shopping day ever, just behind Cyber Monday 2017’s record $6.6 billion in online sales.
As Adobe Analytics pointed out on Thursday, the trend of Black Friday shopping shifting to mobile devices was in full effect on this day. In fact, Adobe reported that the Black Friday purchases made on smartphones was on track to break the current record of single-day smartphone sales, which is $1.4 billion on Cyber Monday 2017. Further, more than one-third (34.3 percent) of all online Black Friday purchases have been made on a smartphone, as of this report, according to Adobe Analytics, which is up from 29.1 percent on Black Friday last year.
“As retailers invest in improving mobile experiences, consumers are clearly feeling more confident in buying higher-ticket items their smartphones,” Taylor Schreiner, a director at Adobe Digital Insights, said in a statement. “While some Americans might have been waiting in lines at stores today, the data suggests that at least some of them joined their peers in shopping on their phones -- and buying more than they did in years past.”
A few interesting tidbits on smartphone shoppers on Black Friday 2018: Adobe Analytics found that iPhone users were 12 percent more likely to purchase after reaching a retail website than their Android counterparts; smartphone visits to a retail website were 5.2 percent shorter, and the number of visits that resulted in purchases was up 7.6 percent. So, shoppers are spending less time on retail websites this year, but they’re completing purchases more often.
In-Store Still Strong
While much of the attention this weekend has been on the online performance, retailers are still reporting strong in-store foot traffic. The National Retail Federation will host a post-Black Friday 2018 conference call early next week to share their findings, but prior to the weekend, the retail association did report that it expected 164 million people to shop during this holiday shopping weekend.
“Whether it’s heading to the stores after finishing their turkey or going online on Cyber Monday, consumers will be shopping all weekend and retailers will be ready to meet the demand,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said in a statement. “Retail is a vibrant, dynamic and competitive industry, but one thing is certain – consumers are the winners no matter which day or which way they shop.”
Of those consumers who said they planned to shop, Black Friday was the strongest performing day with 71 percent of consumers (116 million people) saying they planned to shop on that traditional retail holiday. Another 21 percent (34 million) identified Thanksgiving Day, 41 percent said Small Business Saturday (67 million), 20 percent (32 million) said Sunday, and 46 percent (75 million) identified that they’d be shopping on Cyber Monday.
So, while the online traffic and revenue performance has been on a record-setting pace, brick-and-mortar retail appears to be in an equally strong position this year.