Black Friday In-store Shopping Dropped 52.1% As Online Sales Broke Records. Will Cyber Monday Follow?
Nov 29, 2020
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Even with a month of sales dubbed "Black Friday," online sales still broke records Friday as shoppers continued to click "add to cart" and scoop up deals from home.
The digital sales boost came as fewer shoppers ventured out to stores this year amid the coronavirus pandemic with preliminary data from Sensormatic Solutions showing in-store Black Friday traffic dropped by 52.1%.
According to Adobe Analytics, consumers spent $9 billion online, a nearly 22% increase over the $7.4 billion in 2019 online Black Friday sales.
Adobe, which measures sales at 80 of the top 100 U.S. online retailers, said it's the second-largest online spending day in U.S. history, coming in behind Cyber Monday 2019.
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But shoppers weren't just purchasing new consoles, phones, smart devices and televisions.
"Traditional Black Friday purchases are sharing online shopping cart space this year with unorthodox Black Friday purchases such as groceries, clothes and alcohol, that would previously have been purchased in-store,” Taylor Schreiner, Adobe Digital Insights director, said in a statement sent to USA TODAY.
Among the most popular items were Lego sets, Barbie toys, kid scooters, HP laptops and Apple Watches, according to Adobe.
According to e-commerce platform Shopify, Black Friday sales among its 1 million independent and direct-to-consumer businesses was $2.4 billion globally, a 75% increase in sales from Black Friday 2019.
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Salesforce, a cloud-based software company headquartered in San Francisco, reported even higher Black Friday sales figures. The company says U.S. brands and retailers pulled in $12.8 billion in digital revenue on Black Friday, a 23% growth over last year and globally digital revenue grew 30% reaching $62.2 billion.
And retailers "that offered curbside, drive-through and in-store pickup increased digital sales by 19% compared to those that don’t offer these options on Black Friday," Salesforce said.
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Cyber Monday expected to break more records
Online sales are expected to continue to soar as more shoppers hunker down at home.
Cyber Monday 2020 is expected to break more records and keep its top spot as the busiest online shopping day, with shoppers expected to spend as much as $12.7 billion or 35% more than in 2019, Adobe said.
Salesforce said the surge in digital orders during Cyber Week will challenge the logistical capabilities of many retailers. Many retailers have made changes this year and are using stores as fulfillment centers, have added curbside pickup and are working with delivery services including Uber, Lyft, Postmates and Instacart.
"Retailers that haven’t been planning for ‘shipageddon’ will be in a tough position as they scramble to fulfill the onslaught of digital orders before the winter holidays," Rob Garf, Salesforce vice president of strategy and insights, said in a statement. “With the influx of online orders, retailers that planned for shipping constraints and instituted creative last-mile options will be winners."
Cyber Monday began in 2005 and has consistently beat sale records year after year.
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"Because of COVID and the extension of in-store sales to online, there's no difference between Black Friday and Cyber Monday anymore," said Greg Sterling, vice president of market insights with online presence firm Uberall. "They're now just bookends for an extended shopping weekend."
Kohl's kicked off its Cyber Week sale Saturday and Target starts its sale Sunday with new "Flash Sales" on Cyber Monday.