The new retail shopping season has begun. After a booming Thanksgiving weekend, retailers are on track for holly jolly sales to cap the year.
With deep discounts expected to snare the more than 150 million shoppers from Thanksgiving Day to Sunday, the number of shoppers is expected to jump by a couple of millions this year, according to the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights Analytics.
The most significant aspect in this year is the convergence of both online and foot traffic in stores. For the overall holiday shopping season, IHS Global Insight is forecasting sales to rise 3.7% from 2015 levels with clicks eventually outpacing visits to bricks-and-mortar stores.
The National Retail Federation (NRF) found in its survey that 43.8% of consumers shopped online during the four-day span, a 4.2% uptick over 2015. And Black Friday online sales topped $3 billion for the first time, jumping 21.6% over last year to $3.34 billion, according to Adobe Digital Insights. Meanwhile, mobile shopping saw its biggest day ever, accounting for $1.2 billion in revenue – a 33% jump compared to 2015.
The traditional Turkey and pumpkin pie might have been staples at dinner tables across America Thursday night. But digital marketplaces were shoppers’ best friends as online sales surged which broke records as shoppers scouted deals on their tablets before heading to the mall or made a final purchase with the click of a button.
People are shopping, and it’s a festive atmosphere and happiness among people. And, these days, consumers don’t really care where they shop — whether it’s online, in store, or a mix of the two like services that allow shoppers to order online and pick up in store. What really matters to holiday shoppers is getting the best deals.
Therefore brick and mortar stores like Walmart, Macy and Nordstrom who just three years ago pretended as if the internet doesn’t exist have changed focus to the e-commerce model to woo their customers. This year witnesses a trend of family making shopping decisions on the dinner table, placing online order and post dinner drive thru to pick up the merchandise. No hustling in the rush and no waiting in queues to checkout.