Black Friday update: digital sales break through $4bn for Thanksgiving Day

Stewart Samuel
Program Director - Canada

Date : 29 November 2019

We look at the first sales forecasts coming in for the Black Friday shopping event in the US.

Ecommerce sales hit $4.2bn on Thanksgiving Day

Data from Adobe Analytics revealed that ecommerce sales increased 14.5% to $4.2bn on Thanksgiving Day. This is the first time that sales through the channel have exceeded $4.0bn on this day. Large retailers, those with sales in excess of $1bn, saw the biggest increase, with sales up 244%. Black Friday is forecast to generate sales of $7.4bn, with online sales hitting $600m by 9am.

Making it more convenient

Walmart got off to a great start, with customers searching out key products including TVs, Ryan’s World and Frozen toys and Apple Airpods. Customers were able to optimise a range of convenience-focused tools including digital store maps, colour coded zoning for key deals and the retailer’s ‘Checkout with Me’ programme which enables them to skip the checkout lines.

Digital participation up

Customers were also out in force at Target. The retailer reported strong demand for electronics, toys and video games. Target saw a significant increase in digital shoppers, with 1m more shoppers using the Target app to shop Black Friday deals versus last year. Deals at both retailers continue through the weekend, with Cyber Monday also set to be a key shopping day.

Source: IGD Research

Week of activities

Target is ramping up its activities this week with a series of new daily promotions. These will run through to ‘Green Monday’ on December 9. The retailer will focus on different categories every day, offering savings of up to 50% across the store. Retailers are upweighting their promotional efforts this year given the shorter holiday trading period due to the timing of Thanksgiving Day. 

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