Although Black Friday marks the official start of the holiday shopping season, millions of consumers are already hard at work on their gift lists.
That’s according to Facebook, which saw nearly 19 million users engage in roughly 40 million interactions related to holiday shopping during the first week of November.
Among those early shoppers, 76% were women, and 27% were ages 25 to 34.
The majority of those shoppers reside in the United States, followed by the United Kingdom, Canada, South Africa, and the Philippines.
As for U.S. cities, New Yorkers made the biggest contribution to the shopping conversation in early November, followed by residents of Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles and Atlanta.
During that period, the most popular hashtags included #blackfriday, #christmas, #holidays, #gift, #shoplocal, and #shopping.
Nada Stirratt, vice president, Global Marketing Solutions, North America, says the popularity of early holiday shopping is a relatively recent phenomenon among Facebook users.
“Over the last few years, we’ve seen these conversations kick off long before the heart of the holiday shopping season,” Stirratt notes in a new blog post.
Year-over-year, Facebook expects ecommerce traffic from Instagram to increase by about 51%.
More broadly, analysts are expecting big numbers this year. For the first time, eMarketer recently predicted that U.S. holiday shoppers will spend north of $1 trillion.