Consumers in the US spent a record-breaking total of $8 billion shopping online on Black Friday — a 22 percent increase from 2019, according to Adobe Analytics data. The uptick, however, will not make up for the 52 percent drop in brick-and-mortar traffic during the same period, estimated by retail insights firm Sensormatic Solutions.
Last year, total sales from the five-day period between Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday amounted to about $69 billion, according to research firm Consumer Growth Partners.
Since March, Covid-19 has kept shoppers home. In-store traffic has yet to recover to pre-pandemic levels, but the 50 percent drop on Friday far exceeds the average retail decline in recent months, according to Wells Fargo analyst Ike Boruchow.
“Most of our companies have been citing declines in the 25-35 [percent] range,” Boruchow wrote in a note published Monday morning. “Thus, it would appear that Black Friday’s performance was meaningfully worse than what retailers have been seeing leading up to this key shopping day.”
Still, the National Retail Federation predicted that holiday sales this year will increase between 3.6 percent and 5.2 percent compared to last year.
Adobe Analytics also projects that Cyber Monday will break records with an estimate of $10.8 billion to $12.7 billion in total online spending, resulting in 15 percent to 35 percent in growth from last year. Already, shoppers have spent $23.5 billion online this weekend, up 23 percent from last year, according to Adobe.
Despite a lacklustre Black Friday for physical retail, Boruchow said some stores have been able to protect their bottom lines by limiting the extent of promotions and will likely head into 2021 with lower inventory levels.