Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving and traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year because it kicks off the holiday season. Because the sales are so high for Black Friday, it is a crucial day for stores and the economy in general. With 30% of all the annual retail sales occurring in the time from Black Friday through Christmas, it becomes the busiest and most profitable season for many businesses.
Black Friday: The Busiest Shopping Days
Up to 2006, the number of Black Friday shoppers have steadily increased. Specifically, the number is 74 million in 2015 and increases to 101.7 million in 2016.
Black Friday and Thanksgiving are still the busiest shopping days for retailers but traffic is declining. RetailNext Inc. analyzed in-store videos to count the shoppers and they found that the number of people visiting stores in 2017 was 4 percent lower than in 2016. Continuously, in 2018, it fell as much as 9 percent from 2017.
However, in 2017, in the four-day weekend encompassing the now popular Thanksgiving Day Sales as well as the following Black Friday weekend, there is an overall increase in both sales and the volume of shoppers.
More and more people make their purchase online since stores put their best deals on their websites. According to Adobe Systems, online sales for Wednesday through Black Friday in 2017 was 26.4 percent higher than in 2017, which is 18 percent.
Black Friday Sales and Deals
Surprisingly, the best Black Friday deals are not on Black Friday. In the never-ending race to stay ahead of the competition, retailers are rolling out deeper discounts in pre-Black Friday sales. Some giant retailers such as Target, Walmart, Amazon, Kohl’s, Toys R Us, Sears and Staples are offer deals earlier and earlier. Since the competition this year is so fierce, stores are innovating new ways to get your dollar.
Research has pointed out that the best deals for electronics are offered at the beginning of November. Also, the best day to buy toys is the day before Thanksgiving. And the number of deals hit their peak the week before Thanksgiving with the 20 percent average discount rate for the entire week. That discount increases to 37 percent on Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Saturday.
In terms of online sales, most brands offer the best deals on Thanksgiving Day, not Black Friday. It is the best time to find online discounts for sporting goods, computers, apparel, and video games. However, Black Friday is the best day for online deals on TVs, tablets, appliances, and jewelry.
Black Friday Hiring
The NRF survey reported that stores would hire between 500,000 and 550,000 seasonal workers in 2017. That’s fewer than the record 764,750 workers hired in 2013. At least it’s not as bad as the 263,820 workers hired in 2008.
The Most Popular Buys
Most products see a savings of somewhere between 20% and 60%, but the average savings on Black Friday specials is 37%. Below are the items that are most commonly associated with Black Friday:
- Mobile Phone. One of the 2017 top-selling items for Back Friday were mobile phones with an estimated 40% of all online Black Friday shopping having to do with a cell phone purchases. There is an increase in sales of 11% from 29% in 2016.
- Clothing. Clothing has often been a top draw for shoppers with teen clothing and designer clothing topping the list. Sales see an average of 35% to 40% off their clothing ranging from sweaters to shoes. One of the most popular items in recent years from some of the big box stores is pajamas. While many shoppers may not make the trek out for a deal on pajamas, a lot of shoppers pick them up on the big day.
- Office supplies. Office supplies have discounted an average of 50%, making it one of the most popular shopping items of Black Friday and one of the best times to score some major deals. Shoppers will often stock up on everything from heavily discounted flash drives, printers, ink, and other popular office needs.
- Travel. One of the places you will see some of the biggest savings on your Black Friday journey is travel-related items. This category will see an average of 60% discounts and focus on items such as luggage and travel conveniences.
The Facts about Typical Black Friday Shoppers
Black Friday attracts a range of buyers of all ages, gender, and income, but there are some groups that are more likely to make more purchases than other groups.
Gender. while females still make a larger purchase in terms of Black Friday, males have been slowly closing the gap each year, specifically, 50.4 % of females being Black Friday shoppers and 45.1% being males.
Marital Status. Widowers and divorcees leading the pack with the corresponding percentages are 66.7% and 60.8% of their demographic participating in Black Friday shopping. Following these two groups are married shoppers at 52.7% and single people at 45.1%.
Ages. It is unsurprised that Millenials are the age of most Black Friday shoppers with 53% participating in some part of the Black Friday shopping events. Next, Gen Xers come in a close second with 49.5% and Baby Boomers with 27%.
Income. There is a fact that those earning more intend to spend more on Black Friday sales. Research reveals that those making between 150K and 300K have average spending of $1565.00. And those making between 25K and 50K expecting to spend around an average of $414.
Stores like Best Buy and Walmart are trying to get Black Friday shoppers into their stores by offering specials that are available only in-store. Although shoppers will never completely abandon brick-and-mortar stores, they expect retailers to offer a convenient online alternative.
And even though both online and physical stores will continue to share in the profits of Black Friday, more and more retailers merge this day with Thanksgiving Day and Cyber Monday instead of the traditional one day. Many stores open earlier into Thanksgiving and push their sales throughout the long weekend.