Retailers, Etailers Brace for Invasion of the Black Friday Shoppers

Retailers, Etailers Brace for Invasion of the Black Friday Shoppers 620 360 C-Suite Network

A total of 164 million Americans, or 69 percent of the U.S. population, plan to shop Thanksgiving weekend, according to a new survey by the National Retail Federation.

Upwards of 115 million people, or about 70 percent, plan to shop on Black Friday, the report shows, while 78 million plan to shop on Cyber Monday, 71 million on Small Business Saturday, and 32 million on Thanksgiving Day.

About 66 percent of consumers said they plan to shop during the weekend to take advantage of special deals and promotions.

Comparable predictions for previous holiday seasons were not available, because this is the first NRF report that has taken into account the entire weekend shopping plan.

American consumers are expected to spend an average of US$967.13 per person during the holiday season, up 3.4 percent from year-ago predictions of $935.58, based on a study NRF released late last month.

For the first time, a healthy majority of shoppers — 59 percent — said they planned to shop online. Fifty-seven percent planned to shop at a department store, 54 percent at a discount store, and 46 percent at a grocery store or supermarket.

Smartphone Embrace

American consumers have embraced mobile shopping like never before, suggests a report the Consumer Technology Association released last week.

For the first time ever, more consumers indicated they would use smartphones to shop in November — 61 percent — than any other device, the association’s 2017 Pre-Black Friday Survey found.

“We’re seeing a rise in the ‘omnishopper’ this holiday season,” said Danielle Cassagnol, industry communications manager at CTA.

“This is the always-on and connected consumer who is browsing items, making purchases and responding to holiday deals all from their phones — at any time of day when the right deal strikes,” she told the E-Commerce Times.

Laptop shopping finished second, at 54 percent, and desktop shopping finished third, at 46 percent. Nineteen percent of consumers said they planned to shop using a voice-activated smart speaker, like an Amazon Echo or Google Home device.

For the first time, more consumers planned to shop on Cyber Monday, across all channels, than on Black Friday, the survey revealed. Fifty-seven percent of consumers planned to shop on Cyber Monday or later in November; 51 percent planned to shop on Cyber Monday; 44 percent planned to shop prior to Thanksgiving Week, and only 38 percent planned to shop on Black Friday.

“Moving forward, CTA predicts less and less emphasis will be placed on Black Friday as a single shopping holiday and instead spread over days and weeks,” said Cassagnol, “especially…