Happy Turkey Day everyone!
The biggest shopping weekend of the year is just hours away. This year an estimated 164 million people are planning to shop or are considering shopping during the Thanksgiving weekend, according to an annual survey by the National Retail Federation.
In other words, nearly 69 percent of Americans are expected to shop between today and Monday.
The group's survey of more than 7,000 consumers breaks down shopper behavior for each day during the bargain-filled holiday weekend, including Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Sunday, and Cyber Monday.
Based on the survey, Black Friday is expected to be the BUSIEST day of them all, with an estimated 115 million (70 percent) consumers planning to shop on this day.
Cyber Monday comes in second as 48 percent of shoppers surveyed plan to shop then (equivalent to an estimated 78 million shoppers overall).
Although a smaller number plan to shop on the less notorious shopping days, Saturday (an estimated 71 million) and Sunday (an estimated 32 million), 76 percent say they will do so specifically to support small businesses.
Black Friday Breakdown
For those who are planning to shop on Black Friday, most shopping will be done bright and early, as peak shopping hours are expected to strike before 8 AM.
This will be perfect for retailers considered to be “Black Friday purists”—such as TJ Maxx, Nordstrom, Staples and Home Depot—who will exclusively reserve deals for this day.
Online Shopping During Thanksgiving Weekend
While some consumers may be sticking to the Black Friday tradition, a significant percentage (48 percent) will resort to shopping online for Cyber Monday deals this year. This increased quite a bit in comparison to previous years, while only 36 percent planned to shop on Cyber Monday in 2016.
Furthermore, U.S. online holiday sales overall are predicted to exceed $100 billion for the first time, according to a recent report by Adobe Analytics. Most of these sales are expected to come from Cyber Monday shopping, with online spending projected to reach $6.6 billion (up 16.5% year over year):
Record online spending for the holiday shopping season is underway, and, based on the report, $20 billion in online spending is expected to come from Thanksgiving weekend alone.
An Optimistic Look At Retail
Retailers are acting on the fact consumers will shop anywhere and expect a connected experience across any and all channels. More and more investments in retail technology are being made to fix the broken view of the shopper’s journey, in an effort to provide an integrated shopping experience the modern consumer expects. In fact, 58 percent of retailers invested in tech to handle this year's holiday sales spikes:
“Retailers are starting to embrace automation and related technologies in their operations in a number of ways, from in-store robots to Internet of Things concepts to inventory management solutions, leaving current holiday strategies (throwing more people and inventory at the challenge) in need of a revamp.” – Retail Dive
Retailers trying to stay competitive and relevant are making moves to capitalize on holiday profits using these types of technologies to help them make smarter merchandising decisions to satisfy demand and consumer expectations during the busy holiday season.