Black Friday shoppers set a record for online spending, with over $1 billion in purchases of toys, video games, digital products, and other consumer goods. That represents a 26% increase in sales this year over last for the day after Thanksgiving, according to comScore.
Shoppers logged on in record numbers, according to the company, which specializes in digital business analytics. Online retailers had 57 million visitors on Black Friday, which traditionally kicks off the Christmas shopping season. Amazon had the heaviest traffic of any web site that day, followed by Walmart, Best Buy, Target, and Apple.
Digital content and online subscriptions showed the biggest growth with a 29% jump in spending over last year. The category was boosted by the increased use of smartphones, tablets, and e-readers such as iPads and Kindles. Overall, clothing and accessories was the most popular category for sales, accounting for more than a quarter of a billion dollars in purchases.
Head start on shopping
Not all shoppers waited for Black Friday to start checking off names on their gift lists. On Thanksgiving Day, as turkeys roasted and families gathered, consumers spent $633 million at online retailers – a 32% increase from last year’s Thanksgiving Day spending.
Although Cyber Monday – the first Monday after Thanksgiving – is the day known for the best online deals, many retailers ran specials beginning on Thanksgiving Day. Shoppers may have seen little reason to wait for better prices at brick-and-mortar shops on Black Friday when online retailers were offering bargains sooner. To date in November, online shoppers have shelled out $13.7 billion – a strong start to the season.
What’s on the list?
Besides digital content such as books, music, games and videos, toys are still the big sellers. Shoppers spent 27% more on toys compared to last year, putting them at second place for increased spending right behind digital purchases. Other increases in spending came from packaged goods (up 23%), video game consoles and electronics (both were up 18%).