The first half of November was a worrying time for retailers as online sales for the first three weeks of the month remained relatively flat compared to 2021—up just 0.1% at $64.59 billion.
Thankfully, consumers were simply holding out for further discounts to arrive in the run-up to BFCM.
Thanksgiving, the day before Black Friday, had stronger than expected numbers: shoppers spent $5.29 billion online on the day, up 2.9% from last year.
Black Friday reached a record $9.12 billion in online sales—up 2.3% from $8.92 billion in 2021.
Source: Adobe Analytics, November 2022
Shopify announced a record-setting Black Friday with sales of $3.36 billion—an increase of 17% over 2021. The e-commerce brand also shared some interesting global highlights:
- Peak sales per minute occurred at 12.01 PM EST when merchants collected $3.5 million in sales.
- The top product category was apparel & accessories, followed by health & beauty and home & garden.
- The average cart value was $105.10.
- Cross-border orders worldwide were 15% of total orders.
Consumers Seek the Best Deals
The data shows a strong correlation between discount rates and online sales as more consumers delayed purchasing until the final price reductions.
Understandably, high prices and inflation saw more consumers seeking value and comparing between apps and websites. Adobe revealed toys, gaming, and consumer electronics as the most popular categories for people seeking deals.
And retailers responded accordingly with steep discounts. The average discount rate in the US was 30% compared to 26% in 2021, with home appliances, apparel, health and beauty, and luxury handbags as the most discounted items.
A Better Mobile Experience
Traditionally, Black Friday marked the first day of holiday shopping. But the rise of e-commerce, better mobile devices, and an improved user experience has changed the shape of holiday shopping. People can now shop whenever, wherever, and however they want.
A record 48% (up from 44% in 2021) of online sales and 78% of web traffic came from smartphones this Black Friday. Thanksgiving mobile sales were also up 8.3% from last year at 55% of all online revenue, highlighting the continuous improvement in the mobile shopping experience.
Consumer spending looks strong this holiday season. Both in-store and online sales were up over the Cyber Five (Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday), with retailers delivering deals that enticed consumers to fill their carts despite the challenging economic environment.
The numbers are encouraging and prove online shopping, particularly on mobile, remains as strong as it was during the pandemic. Though Black Friday is over, its success is a promising indicator that e-commerce activity will remain strong in the coming weeks and into the January sales period.
Mobile will continue to play a significant role in consumers’ purchasing decisions. Retailers should still prioritize meeting consumers with personalized offers and recommendations even after the BFCM holiday. Now is the perfect time to test various discounts and offers as we enter the Christmas season and beyond.
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