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Rakuten Marketing Blog

Expected and Unexpected Holiday Trends Revealed with Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday Insights

Posted on Thu, Nov 30, 2017 @ 14:11 PM by Alissa Nelson

In measuring weeks leading up to Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday we found new and exciting holiday trends that can be leveraged for overall 2017 holiday season success.

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After long preparation, dedication and hard work, Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are all over. Through the weeks leading up to these peak shopping days we were able to gain some great insights on mobile performance, new shopping trends, and general year-over-year (YOY) growth.  Marketers can gain new strategies and perspectives on the holiday season based on these trends, which we anticipate continuing throughout the remainder of the 2017 holiday season.

A Merry Mobile Holiday

Thanksgiving Week and Cyber Weekend both saw great success with mobile revenue and purchases. Through Thanksgiving week (November 19 to November 24), we found that smartphone shopping was up with mobile revenue growing by 43 percent year-over-year (YOY), purchases by 34 percent YOY, and AOV by seven percent YOY. Through Cyber Weekend (November 25 to November 27) mobile revenue increased by 37 percent YOY, purchases by 32 percent YOY, and AOV by four percent YOY. This surge of purchases and revenue on mobile indicates an increase of consumers’ comfortability and trustworthiness of mobile shopping.

The mobile trend continues with holiday gift research. Insights found nearly half (46 percent) of all page views occurred on a mobile device during Thanksgiving Week. With mobile becoming more influential, it’s crucial for marketers to optimize campaigns to ensure a smooth, enjoyable experience for the on-the-go holiday shoppers. As the holidays continue, traveling holiday shoppers will continue to look for quick and easy mobile purchases. By providing the luxury of online mobile shopping, brands can continue to drive success through the rest of the busy holiday season.

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Some Snowy Sales Insights

Peak sales days (such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday) are growing YOY, but there has been consistent growth in the surrounding days as well. This year, sales shoppers began their holiday purchases in the two weeks leading up to Thanksgiving. In fact, purchases were up 17 percent YOY during this period. This supports our prediction that consumers would begin their holiday shopping earlier than ever in 2017.

Not only did sales increase in the weeks preceding Thanksgiving, but also on the Sunday before Cyber Monday. Sunday November 26 was the highest growing day of the 2017 season so far. Revenue was up 45 percent YOY and purchases were up 47 percent YOY. This could be because many retailers answered to the elongated shopping season by offering Cyber Monday deals earlier and extending Black Friday ones. Cyber Weekend, in general, had an increase of 23 percent in revenue and 22 percent in purchases.

Thankful Thanksgiving Revenue

Turkey, football and family weren’t the only Thanksgiving activities for holiday shoppers. Consumers were also on their phones throughout Thanksgiving Day, searching for gifts and purchasing them for loved ones and themselves. This is supported with insights from our consumer survey that 19 percent of shoppers get holiday gift ideas from friends and family. Thanksgiving ended up being the largest peak day for revenue growth YOY, with most of this revenue increasing on mobile. Revenue increased by 28 percent YOY, while Black Friday grew by 21 percent and Cyber Monday grew by 12 percent.

Blissful Black Friday Figures

Why bust doors when you can catch some Z’s and get the same deals online in the afternoon? Our insights discovered that peak revenue and purchase activity was at 2:00 pm ET on Black Friday. Black Friday recognized a 21 percent increase in revenue and 24 percent increase in AOV. This all points back to the trend that consumers are spreading spend across more days and most likely saving bigger ticket items for Black Friday.

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Celebrate Cyber Monday Data

The success continued through Cyber Monday, which outperformed Black Friday by 68 percent. Cyber Monday shopping peaks were at 5:00 pm ET and midnight, showing that most consumers waited until after work and evening activities to start shopping for great deals. Revenue and purchases were both up 12 percent YOY. Mobile revenue for Cyber Monday increased by 31 percent and purchases increased by 28 percent. With the multiple areas of Cyber Monday being so strong, it’s clear to see that consumers are becoming more confident with shopping online.

These insights indicate a great start for the holiday season. Consumers will continue to shop through December, as our consumer survey indicated, and brands will continue to see a successful, strong holiday. To further prepare for the rest of the holidays, don’t forget to check out some marketing tips. You can also find more Black Friday and Cyber Monday retail performance data here.

Tags: Rakuten Marketing, Holiday Insights, 2017 holidays, Empowering Marketers with the Gift of Insight, Cyber Monday Holiday Trends, Black Friday Holiday Trends, Thanksigiving Trends

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