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Marketing Strategy 2018: Lessons From Black Friday and Cyber Monday

Posted by Ann D'Adamo on Nov 30, 2017 7:00:00 AM

Instead of bells, retailers were ringing up sales this holiday weekend. Analysts estimate that 174 million Americans shopped between Thanksgiving Day and Cyber Monday and spent roughly $15 billion on gifts. While retailers are celebrating a long-overdue win, they’re also recognizing that the era of the adrenaline-fueled day of shopping has ended, replaced by a steady flow of deals offered throughout the season that consumers can access at the tap of a finger. Here are five trends that emerged as consumers kicked off their holiday shopping.

Amazon Dominated

Amazon was responsible for 55% of all online transactions that occurred on Black Friday as well as 45% of online checkouts completed on Thanksgiving Day. Its closest competitor, Walmart, racked up 8% of all online sales on Black Friday. Best Buy, Kohl’s, Target, Apple, Macy’s, Old Navy, Home Depot, and Game Stop rounded out the top 10. There’s no question that marketers need to have a strong Amazon marketing strategy in place as consumers look there first for deals during the holiday season and beyond.

Consumers Knew What They Wanted

The number of U.S. online shoppers grew by almost 5% while the number of purchasers grew by 13%. The differential reveals that shoppers had already been scouting retail sites and were ready to buy when Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals were announced. Consumers are savvy and willing to shop around and wait for the best prices for the products they want.

E-Commerce Is Merry and Mobile

On Black Friday, online shopping hit an all-time high, growing a quarter year-over-year. Forty-two percent of Black Friday orders were placed on a smartphone, while 49% were placed on a desktop or laptop—this is the first year that sales on mobile exceeded those made on desktop/laptop. Likewise, shoppers set records on Cyber Monday with a third of purchases made on smartphones marking it as the largest mobile sales day in history. Small e-commerce businesses saw a big boost in mobile sales as well—mobile transactions increased by 60% over 2016. This underscores the need for indie brands to have an effective SEO/SEM strategy in place.

Omnichannel Shoppers Spend More

Fifty-eight million consumers shopped exclusively online as opposed to 51 million who shopped exclusively in-store. With so many more consumers shopping online, foot traffic to physical retail stores saw a minor decline, down almost 2% on Thanksgiving Day and 1% on Black Friday, over 2016. However, consumers who shopped both online and in-store spent more than those who shopped exclusively online or in-store, underscoring the need for a strong omnichannel marketing strategy.

Millennials Spent the Most

Millennials were big spenders this weekend, shelling out an average of $420 per shopper, compared to an average of $335 across other demographic groups. While they may not yet be the highest earners nationwide, researchers find they are among the most engaged during the holiday season.

The prevalence of online shopping, a clear shift to mobile, and, of course, the Amazon’s continued dominance set the tone for the holiday season and offered a glimpse into what marketers can expect in the coming year. As 2018 approaches, marketers should consider how their current strategies align with consumer trends. Women’s Marketing offers a suite of marketing services designed to help brands grow.

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Sources: Retail Dive Amazon Devoured 55% of Black Friday Online Orders November 2017, Pymnts.com Black Friday Breaks Mobile Shopping Records 2017, Racked Black Friday Is Mutating 2017, Criteo Retail Data 2017, Adobe Data Shows Cyber Monday Is Largest Sales Day in History with $6.59 Billion

Filed Under: Digital, Amazon