In a resounding success for retailers, Black Friday online sales in the U.S. reached an unprecedented $9.8 billion, showcasing a remarkable 7.5% year-over-year increase, according to Adobe Analytics. This figure not only outpaced Thanksgiving sales but also exceeded Adobe’s initial forecast of $9.6 billion for Black Friday.
Salesforce, employing different metrics and analyzing transactions for around 1.5 billion consumers, reported even higher online sales, totaling $16.4 billion in the US and $70.9 billion globally. Notably, a record 79% of all shopping activities, encompassing both browsing and purchasing, occurred on mobile devices.
The online sales performance on Black Friday surpassed the expectations of retail executives, providing a significant boost to the commencement of the crucial holiday sales period. This success is particularly noteworthy amid concerns of sluggish growth in the overall retail sector.
Salesforce’s data underscored the increasing significance of mobile devices in online shopping, with a record-breaking 79% of all shopping traffic transpiring on mobile handsets. Furthermore, mobile sales are anticipated to surpass desktop sales, constituting more than 51% of total sales during the holiday season.
Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) options continued to gain traction, witnessing a substantial 72% year-over-year increase in orders across the week leading up to Black Friday. The resulting BNPL revenue saw a notable uptick of $79 million during this period.
Discounts, ranging as high as 35% off retail prices, remained a pivotal driver for sales, with consumers showing a particular inclination towards discounted offerings in categories like presents and home electronics.
Smartphones played a pivotal role in Black Friday sales, contributing $5.3 billion. Adobe’s prediction that mobile sales will eclipse desktop sales this holiday season emphasizes the sustained importance of mobile devices.
Consumers, possibly due to economic uncertainties, exhibited a preference for cost-effective “standard” shipping options. Adobe reported that 80.5% of all orders opted for standard shipping.
Adobe anticipates that U.S. online sales during Cyber Week (Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday) will reach $37.2 billion, constituting nearly 17% of total holiday sales. Salesforce, offering a more optimistic outlook, projects that Cyber Week will represent 25% of all holiday purchases, totaling $53 billion globally.
The robust performance on Black Friday sets an optimistic tone for sustained growth during the upcoming holiday shopping weeks, with Cyber Monday serving as the next significant barometer.
A recent report forecasted that Cyber Monday was poised to achieve a remarkable milestone by surpassing $13 billion in online sales, demonstrating robust consumer spending during this digital shopping extravaganza. Black Friday was set to break the $10 billion barrier in online sales for the first time, underscoring the evolving consumer behavior of favoring digital transactions over traditional in-store shopping.