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Sales increase during Black Friday

23 NOVEMBER 2020

4 min read

Black Friday is only getting bigger and bigger and this year is no exception. According to Adobe Analytics, sales volume during Black Friday and Cyber Monday will increase by almost 20% this year. For many stores, Black Friday is the starting signal for holiday sales and the most important period of the whole year.

Black Friday is the day following Thanksgiving in the US and takes place on the fourth Friday of November. It started out as the (un)official marking of the first day of the holiday sales, but quickly grew to become a thing of its own. During the last few years, merchants have started to extend the Black Friday sales throughout the whole week creating Black Week. Black Friday has spread rapidly around the world and the three largest markets for Black Friday are now the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada.

Interesting facts about Black Friday

  • 66% of those who shop on Black Friday buy Christmas presents.
  • During 2019, Swedes shopped at a total value of 7.1 billion SEK on Black Friday.
  • 30% of the Swedes who shopped during Black Friday 2019 shopped only in physical stores, 53% shopped only online and 16% shopped both in physical stores and online. 10% of those who shopped on Black Friday also shopped for goods from foreign online shops.
  • According to PostNord, e-commerce will increase by 33% during the fourth quarter of 2020 compared to the previous year.
  • In the US, Black Friday generates sales of about 50 billion dollar each year and it’s just getting bigger…
  • In 2019 in the US, Cyber Monday online sales totaled 9.4 billion dollar, which outpaced Black Friday's total online sales of 7.4 billion dollar.

When following the trends of what consumers are expected to spend money on during this period, Electronics and Technology still top the lists according to Svensk Handel. Other categories such as Fashion & Clothing, Health & Beauty, Home & Garden and Sporting Goods are also expected to be popular during this year's major shopping holiday.

Bambora's Black Friday data

Another obvious trend is that Black Friday has increasingly become a more digital "holiday" as online retailers increase their sales significantly more than instore retailers. If we look at Bambora's own data, we can see that our online retailers increased their sales by an average of 715% during Black Friday 2019 & 2018 compared to a regular Friday the same years. For instore retailers, sales increased by only 80%.

Within online, the following segments increase the most during Black Friday; Sporting Goods (1,385%), Furniture (1,040%), Apparel & Accessories (875%), Electronics (625%), and Hobby Articles (500%). The fact that all e-commerce segments are seeing a heavy increase, unlike many instore segments that are only experiencing a small increase, also indicates that more and more consumers are choosing to look for their bargains online instead of in stores.

Many retailers extend their Black Friday offers so that they are not only valid on Black Friday but rather throughout the whole weekend, i.e. Black Weekend. During Black Weekend, online retailers increase their sales by 250% compared to a regular weekend. One explanation for the percentual increase in sales during Black Friday being so much higher than during Black Weekend is partly because Black Friday is still the BIG shopping day, and partly because online shopping is generally lower on Fridays than during the weekend. Thus, when comparing online sales during Black Friday to a regular Friday, the percentage increase is massive.

Cyber Monday

If we look at Cyber Monday, we in the Nordics do not seem to have embraced this holiday as much as in the US. According to Bambora's data from 2019, our online retailers “only” increased their sales by 77%, while instore retailers rather reduced their sales slightly compared to a regular Monday. The segments that mainly increased their online sales during Cyber Monday were Sporting Goods (145%), Apparel & Accessories (125%), Furniture (100%), Electronics (90%), and Hobby Articles (54%).

The mobile is becoming more and more important

The mobile is becoming increasingly important in everything we do and especially when it comes to shopping, both in store and online. Among the total e-commerce purchases completed in 2019, the following share was done on a mobile device; 41% in Sweden, 39% in Norway, 32% in Denmark and 31% in Finland. Meaning that about one third of merchants’ sales come from a mobile device. In 2019, 58% of all Black Friday traffic in the UK came from a mobile and 36% of all purchases. The number of Black Friday purchases made on a mobile device will definitely increase this year.

Here you can download our Black Friday E-book with tips on how to get ready for the year’s high season with Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas.

P.S. Did you know that the BLACK in Black Friday actually has its origin from an accounting-perspective? It represents the black ink that companies used to mark the profits, while they used red ink to mark the losses. This practice has been modernized and continued in modern accounting software, and so the term lives on.

Source: PostNord, Channable, Adobe Analytics, Svensk Handel


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