According to Adobe Analytics, Cyber Monday reached new heights this year after setting a record of $7.9 billion online spending. The sales on November 26 show a 19.3 percent increase from the record set last year. Similarly, online sales during this year’s Black Friday brought in a total of $6.22 billion. Thanksgiving also recorded $3.7 billion in sales online.
Noticeably, the number of people who went to stores and malls during the weekend has been low. As it turns out, more consumers are now moving their shopping and finding deals over the internet. With the year coming to a close, holiday sales are predicted to further climb before New Year. Shoppers are more confident in spending money on holiday sale purchases this year which could be attributed to the lower unemployment rate in the U.S.
Smartphone expenses also continue to increase rapidly. Retail companies such as Target and Macy’s have invested money in further developing their mobile phone apps.
However, traffic for traditional retail where transactions are usually more profitable continues to decrease this year. As a result, some establishments are now trying to attract customers back to their stores using mobile apps. For example, Walmart has updated its app before the holidays to include maps of its stores. The maps let customers plan their shopping in advance by directing them to where exactly they can find specific items.
This year’s Cyber Monday also records a 55.6 percent increase on mobile device transactions as compared to the previous year. Adobe, which analyzes sales data for top online retailers in America, said that the sales this year reached $2.2 billion. Over half of the customers’ visits to shopping websites on Cyber Monday were coming from smartphones.
Customers are taking advantage of options to buy items online and picking them up from the store. Sales from this type of transaction have also reportedly increased by 65 percent, according to Adobe.
It is anticipated that Amazon will take over almost half of the e-commerce market in the U.S. before the year ends. It didn’t disclose the actual number of sales during the holiday weekend but had claimed that it was “record-breaking.” Basing on the number of products sold, Amazon said that Cyber Monday set a historical shopping day record. According to the company, shoppers purchased 18 million toys and 13 million fashion-related items during the holiday weekend.
Kohl’s, which accepts returns for Amazon in its stores, mentioned that Thanksgiving Day also set a record for sales online. The company game no comment about the progress of its sales during the holiday weekend. However, it started out some online deal before Black Friday.
Many other retailer companies were also seen doing promotions ahead this year. The holiday weekend which usually marks shopping sales for a couple of days extended into the weeks-long affair for shoppers.
Consumers no longer feel the same urgency that Black Friday usually brought in the past, according to analyst Dana Telsey. Nowadays, promotions and holiday offerings started right after the Halloween, so shoppers do not feel the need to rush.
What It Means For The New Year
With barely more than one month before 2018 ends, retail companies will attempt to preserve the momentum in stores and online. Many companies expect good business performance during the last quarter of the year. On the other hand, there are some apprehensions on whether the growth in sales can be sustained into 2019. The confidence of the consumers will depend on how strong the U.S.’ economy will be this coming year.
If the stores can keep within the margin discipline, both shoppers and retailers can enjoy this year’s holiday. The problem is whether U.S. economy can sustain this pace beyond New Year, Craig Johnson from Customer Growth Partners said.
Analysts are keeping watch so that retailers do not markdown too steeply on their remaining inventory these coming weeks. The technique helps sell merchandise off for the time being but can cause an adverse effect on their profits. The impact might be even significant enough to continue to haunt them until the start of the following year. With next year’s market sustainability still in question, this is a substantial risk to take.