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Nick Schäferhoff
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Holiday E-commerce and Marketing Statistics

It’s never too early to start thinking about and planning for the holiday shopping season — especially if you want your e-commerce website traffic and sales to spike.

To ensure your site is ready for what’s to come in November and December of 2020, it’s a good idea to look back at the holiday e-commerce and marketing statistics of 2019. Not only will you find steady increases in e-commerce activity, but you’ll also notice some very telling trends. Like smartphones as research tools for holiday shopping as well as the growing shift to multichannel e-commerce.

That said, the 2020 holiday shopping season might not be as predictable as previous seasons due to the coronavirus epidemic. So, included with this roundup of holiday e-commerce statistics are some expert predictions for what’s to come later this year.

In this guide, you’ll find the following:

General Holiday E-Commerce Statistics

1. 2019 was the first holiday season to pass the trillion-dollar mark in retail sales. Brick-and-mortar retail and e-commerce spending totaled $1.007 trillion. (eMarketer)

2. Brick-and-mortar revenue comprised $869.4 billion of the total season’s revenue, a growth of 2.4% year over year. (eMarketer)

3. Online spending in the U.S. increased by 13.1% with a total of $142.5 billion spent. (Adobe)

4. When asked how they’d split their holiday shopping, consumers indicated they’d use the following channels:

  • 59% online shopping
  • 36% in-store shopping

(Deloitte)

5. Average daily sales totaled $2.3 billion. Every day netted over $1 billion in sales with the exception of Christmas Eve, which brought in $850 million. (Adobe)

6. Thanksgiving 2019 posted $4.2 billion in sales in the U.S. alone. This was a 14.5% increase from the previous year. (Adobe)

7. Black Friday 2019 sales totaled $7.4 billion in the U.S., making it the second most profitable day of the season. It was a 19.6% increase from 2018. (Adobe)

8. Cyber Monday 2019 had the highest single-day sales in history, totaling $9.4 billion. This was a 19.7% increase from last year. (Adobe)

9. There were $2.8 billion in sales made between 7 p.m. and 11 p.m. on Cyber Monday. More money was spent in this four-hour timeframe than the average day’s sales during the holiday season. (Adobe)

10. The five-day Cyber Week (Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday) brought in a total of $28.5 billion in the U.S. (Statista)

11. $1 of every $5 spent online during the holiday season took place during Cyber Week, an 18% increase from the previous year. (Adobe)

12. Boxing Day sales went up across the board.

Holiday Season Sales Cyber Week Sales
Australia & New Zealand Up 5% Up 31%
Canada Up 13% Up 25%
United Kingdom Up 15% Up 32%

(Salesforce)

13. The average e-commerce order value was $152.95 all season. During Cyber Week, it rose to $162.03. (Statista)

14. Holiday shoppers are much more efficient, spending less time but more money. For a frame of reference:

  • In October, 1.6 minutes were spent for every dollar on big retailer sites. 2.8 minutes were spent for every dollar with small retailers.
  • During Cyber Week, 1.1 minutes were spent for every dollar on big retailer sites and 1.8 minutes for every dollar with small retailers.

(Adobe)

Holiday Shopper Spending Trends

15. In 2019, 89.29% of Americans planned to buy gifts during the holiday season. (Finder)

16. 82.3% of consumers planned to shop primarily with Amazon for their holiday gifts. (Statista)

17. On average, consumers distributed their holiday spend between the following:

  • $596 on experiences
  • $511 on gifts
  • $389 on non-gifts

(Deloitte)

18. The average family spend over the 2019 holiday season was $1496. (Deloitte)

19. 60% of all holiday sales came from big spenders (those who spent over $2100). (Deloitte)

20. Early bird shoppers spend more on average. Consumers who do holiday shopping before Thanksgiving spend nearly $400 more than their later counterparts. (Deloitte)

21. Spending habits change based on where people live. For instance, urban shoppers planned to spend $843 while rural shoppers planned to spend $636. (NPD)

22. The most popular categories to spend money on were:

Clothing and accessories 26%
Food and beverage, health and wellness 20%
Toys and hobbies 17%
Electronics and accessories 15%
Home and kitchen 9%

(Deloitte)

23. Holiday shoppers don’t just spend money on gifts. They also spend money on socialization:

Restaurant dining 59%
Hotel or resort stays 25%
Ground travel 25%
Air travel 18%

(Deloitte)

24. 60% of holiday shoppers start buying Christmas gifts before December 1. (Statista)

25. However, the average holiday shopper in the U.S. has 53% of their shopping still remaining in December. (Think with Google)

26. Only 26% of shoppers complete their holiday shopping before Cyber Week. (Think with Google)

27. 33% of consumers will hold on buying holiday gifts until there’s a sale. (Think with Google)

28. Multichannel holiday shopping is more and more becoming the norm with:

  • 69% of people researching online, but buying in store
  • 57% researching in store, but buying online
  • 45% buying online, picking up in store (BOPIS)

(Deloitte)

29. In 2019, BOPIS purchases grew 35% year over year. (Adobe)

30. In the seven days before Christmas, BOPIS purchases were 55% higher as last-minute shoppers rushed to get their gifts. (Adobe)

31. On average, BOPIS carts end up with 2.4 items with a value of $46 as opposed to the 2.9 items and $54 value of e-commerce only shopping. (Adobe)

32. Holiday shoppers pay for gifts from a variety of sources:

Savings 52.25%
Credit card 42.62%
Borrowed money from friends or family 5.54%
Short-term payday loans 3.23%
Personal loans 3.17%

(Finder)

Holiday Shopping Statistics by Device

33. While shoppers use a variety of devices during the holiday season, e-commerce spending was split unevenly among them:

  • 60.4% desktop sales
  • 34.5% mobile sales
  • 5.1% tablet sales

(Statista)

34. Of the total $142.5 billion in U.S. e-commerce sales, $64.29 billion came from mobile shoppers. (Statista)

35. Year over year, smartphone traffic was up 14%. (Adobe)

36. Smartphone sales were responsible for 84% of e-commerce growth during the holiday season. (Adobe)

37. Desktop and mobile continue to duke it out for e-commerce shoppers’ attention throughout the holiday season (November 1 – December 31):

Desktop Mobile
Traffic Share 37% 58%
Order Share 59% 36%
Conversion Rate 4.3% 1.8%

(Adobe)

38. The split between desktop and mobile shoppers is similar during Cyber Week. The key difference being the increase in conversion rates:

Desktop Mobile
Traffic Share 36% 59%
Order Share 57% 38%
Conversion Rate 6.2% 2.7%
Average # of Checkouts 5.9 3.0
Cart Abandonment Rate 33% 50%

(Adobe)

39. Despite more order completion on desktop, the holiday shopping process starts on smartphones two-thirds as frequently as they do on desktop (Adobe)

40. On Christmas Day in the U.S., 67% of visits and 48% of online revenue came from smartphones. (Adobe)

41. Globally, mobile has a much stronger showing. Here are the breakdowns of mobile traffic and order share by key holiday milestones:

Mobile Traffic Share Mobile Order Share
Pre-Cyber Week 70.8% 53.54%
Cyber Week 72.78% 55.87%
Post-Cyber Week 70.48% 51.56%
Mid-Season 69.85% 49.04%
Pre-Christmas 72.75% 55.66%
Christmas and Boxing Week 75.73% 60.12%
Season Average 72.08% 53.71%

(Salesforce)

Holiday E-commerce Marketing Statistics

42. 49% of holiday revenue generated by email came from smartphone users. (Adobe)

43. 64% of holiday revenue generated by social media came from smartphone users. (Adobe)

44. 23% of consumers use social media to help with their holiday shopping. (Deloitte)

45. The 3 most popular uses of social media for holiday shopping are:

  • 60% of shoppers read product reviews
  • 53% browse product listings
  • 52% look for promotions

(Deloitte)

46. Holiday shoppers use a variety of sources to research gift ideas and purchases:

Online Retailers 65%
Search Engines 58%
Retail Stores 52%
Retailer Websites or Mobile Apps 40%
Manufacturer Websites or Apps 33%

(Deloitte)

47. There were 90% more mobile searches for “best deals” during Cyber Week than from two years ago. (Think with Google)

48. Google search trends suggest that brick-and-mortar retail sales remain high because 30% of consumers want to touch and feel products before buying and 23% aren’t sure what they want to buy until they see it. (Think with Google)

49. In-store holiday shoppers rely on web search to improve their shopping trips with queries related to:

  • Prices
  • Locations
  • Directions
  • Available stock nearby

(Think with Google)

50. Mid-December sees a big uptick in “free shipping” searches as the shipping window for Christmas delivery diminishes. (Think with Google)

51. Last-minute shoppers and those that missed the delivery window are the reason why “store hours” mobile searches on Christmas Eve tend to spike. (Think with Google)

52. Mobile searches for “gift idea” or “gift ideas” increase after Black Friday, reaching their peak a week before Christmas. (Think with Google)

53. During the holiday season, 85% of shoppers prioritize free shipping over 15% who want fast shipping. (Deloitte)

54. Holiday shoppers that prefer fast shipping want purchases to arrive in 2 days or less. (Deloitte)

55. Holiday shoppers that prefer free shipping are willing to wait longer for deliveries, between 3 and 7 days. (Deloitte)

56. 81% of consumers expect to be swayed by holiday promotions. (Deloitte)

57. As far as promotional incentives go, consumers prefer the following:

Price discounts 74%
Free shipping 72%
BOGO  39%
Cash back 29%

(Deloitte)

58. 61% of consumers are willing to share their personal information in exchange for better promotional offers. 34% prefer faster customer service while 31% prefer faster checkout. (Deloitte)

59. Consumers want the following assistance when shopping on websites and apps:

Product recommendations 42%
Visual search tools 17%
Curated subscription products 7%
Voice assistants 6%
Chat bots 5%

(Deloitte)

60. 79% of shoppers are willing to buy from a new retailer over the holidays. (Deloitte)

61. Holiday shoppers say the following can sway them to buy from someone new:

Better prices 72%
Unique products 50%
Coupons or discounts 47%

(Deloitte)

62. In general, holiday shoppers are motivated by the following:

Product assortment 76%
Price 75%
Convenience 64%

(Deloitte)

2020 Holiday E-Commerce Predictions

63. In February 2020, eMarketer made the following predictions for the 2020 holiday season:

  • Total retail spend to increase by 3.4% to $1.042 trillion
  • E-commerce spend to increase by 13.9% to $156.69 billion

(eMarketer)

64. Consumers didn’t have a positive outlook regarding 2020 last year, with 44% expecting a weaker economy. (Deloitte)

65. At the end of 2019, 20% of consumers said they were planning to spend less during the 2020 holidays for the following reasons:

  • 9% to save more than they were spending
  • 8% to pay down debt
  • 7% to deal with a deteriorating household situation

(Deloitte)

66. Retail experts believe that the coronavirus may do a lot of good for e-commerce sales in the future, especially for mega e-commerce companies like Amazon. However, there’s debate over whether it’ll impact the 2020 holiday season or if it’ll start in 2021. (DigitalCommerce360)