E-commerce Sales VS Retail Sales

Black Friday Fight
Image Credit:abcnews.go.com
Crowd Fighting Outside Target on Black Friday

The e-commerce trend is definitely here to stay, providing businesses the invaluable ability to expand across the spectrum of the internet and consumers the flexibility of being able to shop in their pajamas.

Black Friday is hailed as the ultimate shopping day of the year. Since the early 2000s, this day begins with stores opening at insanely early hours, promising to offer the lowest prices of the season for the most wanted items. In fact, national news footage frequently shows stores and mall parking lots the night before, showcasing hundreds of thousands of customers sleeping in tents and sleeping bags, making sure they’ll be the first in line as soon as the doors open the next morning. So just how does Black Friday measure against increasingly-popular Cyber Monday?

Black Friday Statistics
According to the National Retail Federation, in 2005 roughly 132 million shoppers spent an average of $26 billion on Black Friday deals; by 2013 those numbers had increased to 249 million shoppers spending an average of $61 billion. But how did this year’s big day compare to last year’s? Statistics revealed a decrease of 11% in gross profits and a 5.2% drop in shoppers visiting storefronts; 133 million consumers spent roughly $50 billion. Still not a bad day for businesses, but how do those margins stack against Cyber Monday?

Cyber Monday Statistics
Cyber Monday occurs the Monday right after Thanksgiving and was created by marketing companies in 2005 to encourage consumers to shop online, rather than wait for hours in lines at storefronts on Black Friday. According to comScore, statistics released in 2006 showed that online spending on Cyber Monday increased by 25%, bringing in $608 million in sales. 2007 showed an increase of 21% to $733 million and 2008 jumped up 15% to $806 million. comScore reported that the first-ever Cyber Monday to bring in $1 billion in sales occurred in 2010; the biggest sales were made in 2014 – a whopping $2.29 billion. There was an average of 45% more deals on clothing and 50% more deals on footwear on the past two Cyber Mondays than on the past two Black Fridays.

Keep in mind that these numbers only involve a single day of shopping, so let’s take a look at what the future will look for e-commerce platforms:

  • The internet retailer estimates that 60% of U.S. retail sales will involve the web by the year 2017 and that around 10.3% of total retail sales in the U.S. in the next five years will be via online purchasing.
  • Statista has reported that in 2013, over 191 million U.S. residents were online shoppers who had made a purchase online at least one time; it is projected that these figures will surpass in 2015 to be over 200 million.
  • According to Adobe’s CMO, retail sales made online are predicted to steadily grow to $370 billion in 2017.

Perhaps the boom in e-commerce is due to the increasing popularity of the smartphone, or maybe it’s because people enjoy the convenience factor of being able to place an order while watching TV; either way it’s a safe bet that the online shopping industry is only going to grow from here.

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