Anticipation surrounding this year’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday was at an all-time high for the struggling retail industry as in-store purchases continue to decline.
As a result, stores promoted their Black Friday sales earlier than ever before offering the same big sales online and in-stores. By catering to the Black Friday audience, early insights suggest stores were able to capitalize on the biggest shopping day of the year.
Understanding the Black Friday Audience
Black Friday deals aren’t just targeted towards women. In fact, men are also highly engaged in Black Friday sales, especially with the rise in popularity of tech and smart home items.
While clothing remains a key area of interest for Black Friday shoppers, smart products, such as the iPhone X, Amazon Echo, and Google Home were some of the most buzzed about items leading up to the big shopping event.
Amazon Echo was the most overall talked about product by consumers beating out Google Home by only 2% conversation volume. However, Google Home beat out conversations surrounding Amazon Echo on Black Friday itself by over 35%. Both products were extremely positive, with consumers discussing them positively 80% of the time. Overall, smart home products were talked about 4x more than any clothing brand, representing the most significant shift we noted in Black Friday shopping trends.
Another notable shopping trend this year was the rise in popularity of JC Penney over any other big chain store. Despite financial woes, JC Penney doubled down on a huge Black Friday push, which drove positive consumer conversations surrounding the brand.
Ecommerce Continues to Impact Black Friday Engagement
The continued growth of ecommerce has upended and blurred the lines between the in-store tradition of Black Friday and the online sales of Cyber Monday. When comparing Black Friday conversations in 2017 to those in 2016 or 2015, the event has only gotten bigger and extended its relevancy with consumers.
For example, 2015 Black Friday conversations took off in November as stores began their promotions. This year, buzz for the shopping event began as early as May with a huge conversation spike in mid July as Best Buy hosted an “early-bird” Black Friday sale.
Retailers have also responded by shifting their Black Friday sales online. As a result, Black Friday’s dominance has exceeded Cyber Monday with more stores incorporating Cyber Monday tactics into their Black Friday deals. While Black Friday is discussed 172% more than Cyber Monday by consumers, Cyber Monday is still talked about positively 89% of the time.
Despite Black Friday’s popularity, Cyber Monday, especially the online ease of shopping associated with it, still contains some value for retailers, as well as favoritism among consumers. It should be no surprise then that Cyber Monday hit an all-time high $6.59B in US online sales already.
Top five trends of November
Besides shopping, here are the top five topics people were buzzing about this November.
Amit Avnet is the founder and chief executive of Taykey.