Over the course of four days – Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Sunday, shoppers spent $22 billion, compared to $21.4 billion in the same period last year. Consumers got an early start on their holiday shopping, taking advantage of deals on Thanksgiving Day instead of waiting for Black Friday.
An estimate by ShopperTrak, showed that retail foot traffic rose 8.2% on the weekend after Thanksgiving this year. That adds up to more than 594 million store visits and an increase of 2.7% in sales.
“Doorbuster” sales on Thanksgiving Day added to that total, as people flocked to stores on the actual holiday rather than waiting to kick off the season the next day. Black Friday sales were actually down slightly from last year, but the increase in spending on the days surrounding it made up for the dip, according to Bill Marin, ShopperTrak founder.
“Shoppers follow value. And this year, for the first time, retailers presented significant value for shopping on Thanksgiving Day, so even though retail sales were slightly down on Black Friday, traffic and sales for the weekend as a whole increased,” he said
Online sales soar
When it came to online shopping, the two biggest days of the holiday shopping season so far, Black Friday and Cyber Monday, saw over $2.5 billion in sales receipts, according to ComScore.
Retail sales may have been slightly lower on Black Friday this year, but that wasn’t the case online. Black Friday set a record for the biggest online day of spending with $1.042 billion in sales, but that record was quickly broken on Cyber Monday when buyers made $1.465 billion worth of purchases.