America Sees Record-Setting Online Sales On Black Friday

Internet sales and discounts contributed to a 7.5% year-over-year growth in U.S. internet sales, with consumers spending a record $9.8 billion on the holiday.

U.S. consumers spent about $38 billion online during Thanksgiving, indicating a robust Christmas shopping season amid economic uncertainties, thanks to deep discounts on various items. The five days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday saw a 7.8% increase in online consumer spending, well above the 5.4% increase predicted at the outset. Blockbuster sales aided bargain seekers despite warnings from industry experts that consumers should be careful with their purchasing owing to sticky inflation-constrained budgets.

On Thanksgiving weekend, almost 200 million consumers shopped in stores and online, up over 2% from the previous year and more than double the 182 million predicted by the trade group. Retailers should benefit from offering deeper discounts this season, according to LPL Financial chief economist Jeffrey Roach, as shoppers are more price-sensitive.

Zacks Investment Management’s client portfolio manager Brian Mulberry, who has investments in both Amazon and Walmart, thinks it will be fascinating to see whether the discounts considerably increase in the next week or two to encourage purchasing.

With shoppers still feeling the pain of inflation, Amazon announced “record-breaking” bargains leading up to Cyber Monday. Its “largest ever” holiday shopping event occurred between November 17 and Cyber Monday, compared to the same 11-day period last year. Attempting to attract early Christmas customers, merchants have been advertising specials far before Black Friday in recent years, thanks to the rise of internet shopping.

Using data from Adobe Analytics, American consumers spent $12.4 billion on Cyber Monday, surpassing original predictions of $12 billion and marking a 9.6 percent increase from the previous year. Cyber Week sales of $38 billion were higher than Adobe’s forecast of $37.2 billion.

Due to rising food costs and the return of student loan installments have eroded some consumers’ Christmas budgets, experts and retailers were wary going into this year’s holiday shopping season.