First off, here’s the data from a number of sources so far. We will fill in the gaps of this table and share our final remarks in a follow-up blog post in early January. But here’s what we know so far:
|Thanksgiving Day Ecom||$5.3b (+2.9% YOY)|
|Black Friday Retail||(+23% YOY)|
|Black Friday Ecom||$9.12b (+2.3% YOY)||$15b (+12% YOY)||+12%||$9.12b|
|Cyber Monday Retail|
|Cyber Monday Ecom||$11.13b (+4% YOY)||$12b (+8% YOY)|
|Black Friday – Cyber Monday Weekend||$7.5b (+19% YOY)|
|Cyber Week Retail|
|Cyber Week Ecom or “Online”||$35.2b (+3.5%YOY)||67.6b (+9% YOY)|
Summary of the Numbers:
- 5-10% growth in Cyberweek for E-commerce / Online retail
- Overall retail spend numbers are not available yet
According to an article by Investors.com:
“NRF was forecasting modest growth overall for retail but at a growth rate that slightly declined from last year:
National Retail Federation (NRF) forecast growth of 6% to 8% in U.S. holiday sales for 2022 to between $942.6 billion and $960.4 billion. In 2021, holiday sales grew 13.5% (a banner year) and totaled $889.3 billion, says NRF”
Key Early Points of Learning
Consumers Started Early
Holiday shopping started earlier and Thanksgiving Day itself is now a key data point in looking at Holiday shopping; it’s not just about Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Cyber Week any more. Consumers learned during the pandemic that they couldn’t always count on supply chains and inventories to work the way they wanted to, so they’ve learned to start earlier! In fact there are many indications that holiday shopping started as early as September! According to Delloite’s pre-season survey, 23% of consumers planned on starting early and being done by the end of October due in part to inflation / inflation fears. The full report has some great survey data, so check it out!
Yes, there were concerns about inflation, BUT…
E-commerce growth rates continued but those of us in the business know that the line between “offline” and “online” retail is really starting to blur. While there are recessionary concerns looking into the near future, that didn’t stop consumers, even in the lower income tax brackets, from spending early on. A lot of this year’s spend may be an end-of-pandemic benefit and since the employment numbers remain healthy it’s not a surprise that the numbers remained strong this holiday season (so far).
Consumer Behavior Changes / Early Trends
Early reports cited a decline in mobile compared to last year and an increase in desktop shopping. This makes sense if you consider post-pandemic people are still working from home a lot and if the shopping season is longer, they may be taking breaks from work to shop on their laptops/desktops. Desktop conversion rates have historically been higher and they continued this was this holiday season, as shown in Adobe’s early results.
An Interesting Word from BigCommerce:
BigCommerce, the SaaS platform continuously challenging Shopify, is rapidly growing so it makes sense that their growth numbers were very robust:
“Given the soft global economy, this year’s peak holiday sales week is more important than ever. With a year-over-year sales increase of 31% on Black Friday and 23% on Thanksgiving, BigCommerce merchants grew significantly faster than overall ecommerce,” said Brent Bellm, Chief Executive Officer at BigCommerce. “Our merchants sell more by taking advantage of BigCommerce’s industry-leading capabilities in customer experience, multi-storefront expansion and omnichannel selling.”
The Bottom Line
We still need to see the final numbers and compare overall retail with e-commerce more closely but from the initial insights, the surprise was the continued level of growth in e-commerce despite the longer holiday season and concerns about inflation. We are hypothesizing that consumers are burned out from a pandemic and perhaps don’t want to hear anything about inflation…that combined with high savings rates and leftover cash from the pandemic kept this year’s early holiday numbers strong.
We’ll provide more data and analysis in January! Have a great holiday break!