Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2017 – key takeaways

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As the Black Friday weekend came to a steady close, the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales statistics are now in the books and with that data in hand, it is time to dissect it, dive deeper into various aspects of it, analyse it, and make note of the inferences and learnings to be used for the future.

To begin with, it was reported that American consumers spent over US $19 billion online over the five-day period from Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday in 2017. This was a 15 percent rise in spends as compared to spends done during the same time-frame last year.

Moving on, more than 64 million Americans used both online and physical stores to carry out their purchases from Thanksgiving Day through Cyber Monday. Consumers who shopped at both online and brick-and-mortar stores spent US $82 more on an average than online-only shoppers, and US $49 more on an average than brick-and-mortar stores-only shoppers. Black Friday 2017 seemed to be the most popular day for brick-and-mortar retail stores with more than 70 million shoppers, followed by Small Business Saturday (Nov. 25, 2017) with about 55 million shoppers.

One of the most important takeaways for retail businesses basis the above statistics is both offline and online retail channels were used by consumers to shop. In fact, consumers who used more than one channel to shop spent higher on an average than those who used only a single channel.

Mobile shopping or m-commerce has developed in to a popular channel for consumers to discover and buy products. And this popularity reached new levels this year as mobile purchases surpassed those on desktop throughout the entire Black Friday weekend. Mobile sales accounted for more than 60% of orders overall, an increase of 10% over the last year. Thus, retailers across the globe need to definitely harness this channel to boost their sales in the future.

With online, offline and mobile – 3 important channels at play significantly in this year’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping event, a very important learning for retailers is that omni-channel retail can help them maximize their sales.

Another important aspect of this year’s Black Friday shopping event was that, though dominated by U.S., other countries across the globe also noted a significant spike in their sales on the same day. Reports state that countries like South Africa, Spain and the United Kingdom saw over 3 times as many orders on Black Friday, whereas Germany, Canada and France witnessed over 2 times the orders. Other countries like Ireland, Singapore and China also noticed a bump in the number of orders on Black Friday 2017. Thus Black Friday is becoming a global phenomenon soon. For retail businesses across the globe, this translates into an opportunity to attract more customers and drive higher sales.

Retail brands looking to strike big in the near future must pay heed to these key takeaways and use the right combination of people, processes and technology to succeed.

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