Black Friday Sales Bode Well For Cyber Monday
Black Friday online sales rose to the challenge, surpassing those at brick-and-mortar locations, but Shop.org expects sales to surpass expectations on Cyber Monday, which folllows Thanksgiving.
About 195 million shoppers visited stores and Web sites during Black Friday weekend -- up from 172 million last year, according to the National Retail Federation survey conducted during the weekend by BIGresearch. Consumers spent on average less during the weekend -- about $343.31 per person from $372.57 in the prior year ago. Total spending reached an estimated $41.2 billion. Consumers spent an estimated $41.2 billion, the survey shows.
The average online order on Black Friday reached $170.19 -- up from $126.04 in 2008, recorded Coremetrics, a data collection and analysis firm. People spent more time online and bought more items per purchase, but spent less time browsing.
Browsing sessions dropped 5.4%. That could mean people know what they want to buy and the price they are willing to pay. On the other hand, bounce rates rose. The number of people who left a site after viewing only one page climbed 39.4%. Page views per session declined by 30.4%, according to Coremetrics, San Mateo, Calif.
Coremetrics President and CEO Joe Davis says that in September and October, the company began to see a 22% increase in the average online order size, compared to last year. In November, "conversions rose 50%, compared with last year," he says, defining "conversion" as the number of people who come to the Web site and make a purchase.
About 60% of Coremetrics' business comes from retail; 10% from hospitality; 10% from retail banking and brokerage; and 20% from content sites, such as Kraft Foods. The company focuses on email conversion rates and data collection and analysis that track individual visitors to a Web site.
Coremetrics aggregates retail data from Abercrombie & Fitch, Bath & Body Works, Bloomingdale's, Coldwater Creek, Macy's and Nordstrom, among others.
The ability to track keyword campaigns can provide retail marketers with insight into what gets consumers to part with their money. Some retailers show special deals or codes based on the traffic source, even for offline use. These provide marketers with insight into whether their pay-per-click (PPC) campaign or search engine optimization (SEO) campaign contributed to the sale, according to Kevin Lee, Didit CEO.
This year. Tom Tom GPS systems, Kodak digital cameras and the Nintendo Wii took the No. 1, 2, and 3 spot, respectively, as the hottest items online Black Friday, according to credit card fraud prevention company Retail Decisions. The company reported that the busiest minute for sales Friday peaked at 12:59 p.m. EST, when $5.6 million in products were sold --up 131% from the same time last year.
Consumers spent $183 million in one hour between noon and 1 p.m. at U.S. online retail stores on Black Friday, according to Retail Decisions. The company reported that by the end of Black Friday, online retail sales had reached $3 billion -- up 52% compared with last year.
Searches for "black friday" on Thanksgiving and Black Friday rose more than 20%, year-over-year, according to Google. Searches for "black friday sales" on Thanksgiving and Black Friday were up by more than 50%, compared with the prior year.
Leading up to Black Friday, as of Thursday, Nov., 26, the top 10 searches for products in the United States on Google included boots, shoes, nike, black Friday, dress, watches, watch, necklace, dresses and jeans, according to Google Insights for Search.
The better-than-expected online retail sales experienced on Black Friday should continue through Cyber Monday. A survey conducted for Shop.org by BIGresearch suggests that 96.5 million Americans plan to shop on Cyber Monday this year, up from 85 million in 2008.