Trends: Black Friday & Cyber Monday

Happy Thanksgiving to all! Here are some quick TopRight insights on recent trends in Black Friday and Cyber Monday consumer behavior.

4 Black Friday Trends

Thanksgiving Day Will Be Quiet

An overall drop in Thanksgiving Day shoppers reflects the fact that consumers are making more purchases online, but it also suggests that people want to take a step back from consumerism in favor of real connection on a day of gratitude.

More retailers are opting to close their doors on Thanksgiving as well. Mega-retailer Target, for example, has chosen to close its doors permanently for the holiday. Perhaps this decision to opt out will boost sales as it once did for REI back in 2015.

Online Sales at Secondhand Shops Are Soaring

Once again, most gifts this year will be ordered online. But more and more purchases are being made at secondhand shops.

Not so surprising anymore, but more than 50% of purchases are projected to be made online this holiday season. The convenience of online shopping is obvious: 43% of consumers consider online purchasing better for their schedules. But given the pandemic and the state of the economy—improving, but still weak—consumers are going thrifty this year.

Connected Spenders Have the Biggest Growth Potential

The demographic that The Demand Institute calls “Connected Spenders” is growing faster than the middle class and serves as a better indicator of where global consumption trends are headed. Unsurprisingly, the most important aspects of a “Connected Spender” is internet access, digital savvy, and participation in the digital economy.

These types of connected consumers are more eager to try new products and more likely to pay a premium for better quality items. They aren’t just using the internet to make purchases, they’re also using the web to research, review and recommend products to their peers. Their journey, as a buyer, is a largely digital experience.

Omnichannel Shopping Experiences Are Now Required

Customers want integrated, seamless shopping experiences. If they do the research online, they want you to have it in stock at the store. If they have questions after leaving the store, they expect the same level of customer service on social media.

Connected spenders are using the internet to explore and engage with retailers and brands—and as brands, you must be in control of that experience. How can you better serve the needs of this digital savvy consumer base? It’s clear from these trends that consumers are no longer interested in the status quo.

The old ways of marketing are broken. Engaging the right customer with the right message at the right time and through the right touchpoints requires new perspectives and a holistic rethink of your go-to-market strategy.

 

3 Cyber Monday Trends

Cyber Sales Still On an Upward Trend

Last year, Cyber Monday hit a record-shattering $10.8 billion in sales. Time was, Cyber Monday sales were in a pattern of doubling every season. They have now slowed a bit, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t still rocketing sky high.

There’s no indication that 2021 sales won’t continue the upward trend—some are saying they will be over $11.8 billion this year, the biggest single shopping day in US history. And what does that mean for shoppers? Traffic. Overwhelmed sales portals. Waits, slow service, crashed websites. So make sure your contact points and sales portals are as updated, clean, aligned, and functional as ever this year.

Cyber Monday Is Spreading 

With the near-universal accessibility of mobile devices, Cyber Monday has spread to nearly every major economy in the world, whether they happen celebrate Thanksgiving or not.

Predictably, companies love the idea of having Cyber Monday everywhere. And with phones making purchases easier and easier, automation making it unnecessary to staff salespeople, and more countries engaging in the online economy, Cyber Monday may well go fully universal—meaning every country will participate— within just a few years.

Protect Yourself Against Fraud

Online fraud is a bigger issue today than it was five years ago or even last year. With more shopping online comes more opportunities for phishing scams and cons.

The solution for this at the moment, we know, lay in AI and machine learning, but the tools are not yet universal or perfect. So you will have to make your own choices in how to protect your data, sales, and customers online. We’ve written about consumer safety and data security before.

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