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Black Friday Shopping Up From 2020, But Still Falls Short of Pre-Pandemic Numbers

Black Friday Shopping Up From 2020, But Still Falls Short of Pre-Pandemic Numbers

More shoppers flocked to stores on Black Friday this year compared to last out of concerns over the supply chain, but online shopping was lower than expected, according to data analytics firm Sensormatic Solutions. Major retailers, including Amazon, Target, Walmart, and Best Buy, also started running Black Friday promotions and price pledges as early as October to appease demands from customers.

Black Friday foot traffic was up 48% over 2020, but still down 28% from 2019, according to a preliminary Sensormatic Solutions report. Total online spending on Black Friday was around $8.9 billion, which was attributed to shoppers buying earlier this year due to worries over the supply chain issues slowing the delivery of gifts. The Adobe Digital Economy Index, which tracks purchases in real time, had predicted a slightly lower outcome than 2020, when total spending hit $9 billion. In 2019, online spending on Black Friday reached $7.4 billion, per Adobe.

This year marks the first time where both Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday didn’t see an increase in online spending year over year, another sign that consumers started to shift their spending to earlier in the season, responding to promotions and deals from retailers that started in October, Adobe said in a statement. But Adobe is also predicting that Cyber Monday will be the biggest online shopping day of 2021, with between $10.2 billion and $11.3 billion spent online.

Meanwhile, the National Retail Foundation (NRF) predicted last month that overall holiday sales during November and December will grow between 8.5% and 10.5% over 2020, compared with an 8.2% growth during those same months in 2020.

About 158 million people are expected to shop in stores or online by the end of the day Cyber Monday, according to an NRF survey conducted earlier this month.

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