Black Friday 2023: Record-breaking $16.4 Billion in Online Sales

28 Nov, 2023 | Statistics

Black Friday, which falls on the day after Thanksgiving in the United States, has become a worldwide phenomenon in the retail world, officially starting off the holiday shopping season. It is a crucial indicator of a country's economic health, indicating consumer confidence and discretionary spending patterns. Online sales have been increasingly prevalent on Black Friday in recent years.

Salesforce research shows that in 2023, U.S. consumers spent an incredible $16.4 billion online on Black Friday. A record $12.4 billion was spent online by U.S. consumers on Cyber Monday. The U.S. economy grew robustly in the three months that ended in September 2023, tripling the growth of the previous quarter at an annualized pace of 4.9%. However, the COVID-19 pandemic's aftereffects strengthened people's inclination for internet buying.

Shopping behaviors and economic impact

About 68% of American consumers chose to make Black Friday purchases online in 2023, while 27% preferred the in-store experience. Clothes (48%), consumer electronics (36%), shoes (32%), accessories (27%), and household appliances (22%) were the most sought-after categories. Moreover, Contributing significantly, mobile devices accounted for 54% of online sales. Black Friday took a new turn in 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, prohibiting shoppers from buying in physical stores. 

With a combined spending of $9.12 billion and $11.3 billion on Black Friday and Cyber Monday in 2022, respectively, buyers broke all spending records in the U.S. With $8.9 billion spent on Black Friday and $5.14 billion spent on Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday together generated $14.04 billion in online sales in 2021. 2020 saw $14.13 billion in total online sales, with $9.03 billion being spent on Black Friday and $5.1 billion on Thanksgiving. Black Friday and Thanksgiving combined accounted for $11.9 billion in online purchases in 2019 (spending $7.5 billion on Black Friday and $4.4 billion on Thanksgiving), while in 2018, they hit $9.9 billion (spending $6.2 billion on Black Friday and $3.7 billion on Thanksgiving).

Despite having its roots in the US, Black Friday is today observed in many other nations across the globe. The shopping event is attended by participants from Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, India, and Brazil, among other countries. With the assurance of deep discounts, Black Friday has become a worldwide phenomenon, with consumers waiting impatiently for the greatest offers.

Retailers with the Best Deals

A few American retailers stood out as the key players of the Black Friday sale in 2023. At the top for the sixth time since 2014 is JCPenney, a mainstay in the clothing and jewelry industry, with an average Black Friday discount of 59%. With an average discount of 58%, Macy's took second place, closely followed by Belk at 55% and Kohl's at 49%. Best Buy provided an attractive 30% discount, while Target had an average discount of 33%. 

The two biggest E-retailers, Amazon and Walmart, offered savings of 29% and 27%, respectively. Indian companies, such as the well-known cosmetics website Nykaa, renamed the occasion as "Pink Friday," luring customers in with up to 50% off clearance sales. With over 2,100 brands, Nykaa has created an enticing shopping experience with well-known names like M.A.C., Bobbi Brown, and L'Oreal Paris. The three brands, Tata CLiQ, Tata CLiQ Luxury, and Tata CLiQ Palette, are all offering substantial discounts in a variety of categories introduced by the Tata Group. 

Tata's Black Friday sales included everything from jewelry to home goods, accessories, shoes, clothing, and cosmetics. The savings shot up to a whopping 85%. Furthermore, Consumers were drawn in by embedded financial services like Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) and, Pick Up In-Store (BOPUS). BNPL services were anticipated to generate $1.57 billion in 2023 during Cyber Monday. Customers planned their Black Friday purchases in a variety of ways. About 64% visited retailer websites, 58% e-mails, 33% online articles/blogs, and 30% retailer applications.

In-store advertisements accounted for 15% of the references, 20% came from TV and radio advertisements, and 21% came from newspapers. However, there were difficulties because there was an increase in cyberfraud and scams around Black Friday in 2023. 52% of the top US retailers did not follow email security standards to the fullest extent possible, making them open to cyberattacks and phishing scams. 92,259 spam emails with the term "Black Friday" were found by Kaspersky in the first two weeks of November 2023.

The growth of Black Friday is a reflection of how consumer behavior, the state of the economy, and international trade are changing. The global effects of this retail phenomenon are being observed.

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