Black Friday analysis offers mixed bag for retailers
By Jennifer Osieczanek
With more hours to shop — thanks in part to stores opening even earlier than ever on Thanksgiving Day — more consumers went in search of bargains over the holiday weekend. However, with so many deep discounts luring those customers, retailers may not see as big of a boost from the shopping blitz.
According to the National Retail Federation, more than 141 million shoppers participated in the Thanksgiving weekend sales. That figure is up 2 million from the same weekend in 2012.
Many of those shoppers started on Thanksgiving, as nearly 45 million people (an increase of 27 percent) took advantage of brick-and-mortar stores opening their doors on the holiday itself, the National Retail Federation’s survey finds. Black Friday remained the busiest shopping day with more than 92 million people hitting the stores, up from nearly 89 million last year.
But while figures for the number of shoppers grew, the amount those consumers spent fell, according to the survey. On average, shoppers spent $407.02, down from $423.55 in 2012. That said, the $407.02 is an estimated figure as Dec. 1 sales have not been calculated yet.
Specific stores such as Walmart and Target reported strong sales from the holiday weekend.
Walmart announced its “largest three day stretch in sales volume ever” for Walmart.com between Thanksgiving Day and Nov. 30. In fact, Thanksgiving Day was Walmart.com’s all-time highest traffic day, according to the company. Walmart also found success with its mobile traffic, reporting that on Black Friday, 55 percent of visits to Walmart.com were via mobile, also a new company benchmark.
Target.com also saw heavy traffic on Thanksgiving Day. With doorbuster deals available online in the early hours of the holiday, the retailer saw twice as many orders this year as during the same time frame in 2012.
“Starting in the early morning hours of Thanksgiving Day on Target.com, through our Thanksgiving night store openings, traffic across all channels was strong,” Target’s Jeff Jones, executive vice president and Chief Marketing Officer, said.
Target, and many other retailers, have yet to release final figures for the entire holiday weekend of shopping.
Read more about Target here.
Read more about Walmart here.
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