Were record Cyber Monday/Week sales enough to help retailers salvage 2020?
Online sales during this week’s Cyber Monday event grew 15.1 percent year-over-year to around $10.8 billion, according to Adobe Analytics. Now, the question is whether those online sales combined with others made earlier in the month are enough to help retailers overcome any damage done to their businesses as a result of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
With Cyber Monday in the sales column, consumers have spent $106.5 billion online during the season to date. It took nine more days for online sales to top $100 billion in 2019, according to Adobe, which analyzes visits to 80 of the largest retailers in the U.S. Based on performance to date, the tech company is forecasting online sales will increase 30 percent over last year, down from an earlier estimate of 33 percent growth.
Consumers were attracted to purchase based on deals in categories including computers, consumer electronics, sporting goods, appliances and toys. With discounts expected to be pulled back between five and 10 percent as the season progresses, retailers may see some slough off in sales compared to past holidays.
Retailers of all sizes got a sales lift from their Cyber Monday events. Large companies saw sales jump 486 percent over their daily averages in October. Small merchants achieved even bigger percentage gains at 501 percent.
Consumers were more likely to use mobile devices and retailer apps in placing orders this year than last, with 37 percent of those making purchases using their phones.
Curbside pickup was also in strong demand, a continuation of a trend established earlier in the year when many stores closed to walk-in customers or limited the number of shoppers at any given time.
Research by Salesforce found that offering various pickup options was sales positive for retailers that provide the services versus those that do not. U.S. retailers with curbside, drive-through and in-store pickup saw digital revenues jump 29 percent during Cyber Week, compared to 22 percent at businesses that did not.
Salesforce has estimated that as many as 700 million packages will face shipping delays over the holiday season and that earlier cutoff dates will make curbside and other pickup options even more attractive to shoppers.
- A record-breaking Cyber Week 2020: Online shopping steals the show – Adobe Digital Insights
- Salesforce Data Reveals All-Time High $60 Billion in U.S. Cyber Week Digital Sales – Salesforce/PRNewswire
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Will online holiday sales gains be enough to help retailers recoup sales lost as a result of the pandemic? Are pickup options such as curbside becoming table stakes for retailers selling products online?