Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Online Sales Soar, Foot Traffic Plunges Black Friday


On Black Friday, foot traffic plunged while online sales jumped. Cyber Monday now begins.
Black Friday Bust

For retailers without a strong online presence, Black Friday Was a Bust.

Roughly half as many people visited stores on Black Friday as they did last year, according to research firms that track foot traffic. Meanwhile, online spending jumped 22% from a year ago, making it the second-best online shopping day ever measured by Adobe (NASDAQ:) Analytics.

On Black Friday online sales hit $9 billion, up 22% from last year, according to Adobe Analytics, which measures 80 of the top 100 U.S. e-commerce sites. The gain was near the low end of Adobe’s forecast, which had projected growth of between 20% and 42% from last year.

Meanwhile, foot traffic to stores on Black Friday fell 48% this year from last year, said RetailNext, which provides cameras, software and analytics to thousands of U.S. stores and shopping centers. Sensormatic Solutions, another tracking firm with cameras in stores, said in-store traffic fell 52% on Black Friday compared with last year.

It is unclear whether an early start to the holiday shopping season, the online Black Friday surge and an expected record day on Cyber Monday will be enough to offset the money lost from in-person shopping for many chains.

One Stop Shopping

Stores like Walmart (NYSE:) and Target (NYSE:) did much better than department stores.

Covid-wary shoppers are reluctant to go to multiple stores and stand in multiple lines.

At a Walmart superstore, people can buy a TV dinner, a TV, and a game to play after.

Cyber Monday in now in the batter’s box. Even though online sales on Black Friday were up, they barely matched expectations while foot traffic was a total loser for many stores.

All things considered, Black Friday was an overall downer but results varied widely.

I suspect Cyber Monday will be more of the same. We will find out later today.

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