November 9th, 2014 | 3 MIN READ

Thursday is the New Black Friday and Other Holiday Predictions

Written by author_profile_images Linda Bustos

Linda is an ecommerce industry analyst and consultant specializing in conversion optimization and digital transformation.

According to this year's 2014 Holiday Shopping Prediction by the Adobe Digital Index, it's Thanksgiving, not Black Friday that online prices will hit rock bottom, increasing Tuesday after Cyber Monday. In-store prices will match online prices except for Black Friday promotions and inventory clearance offers (with out of stock messages increasing 5x on Cyber Monday). Adobe's Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday predictions in previous years were within 1%


Tip: Have a plan for saving sales from stock-outs

Despite the deepest discounts on Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday is expected to become the fastest growing shopping day online - a YoY increase of 28%, with Thanksgiving pulling in its own record sales day, increasing 27% YoY. But Cyber Monday still rules them all online, growing only 15% but pulling in $2.6 Billion.

Mobile commerce

Thanksgiving is predicted to be the "most mobile" shopping day, with 31% of online sales coming from smartphones and tablets (an increase of 21% over last year). Black Friday comes in second with 26%, and Cyber Monday taking the bronze with 21% share of online sales.

Think mobile shopping is biggest in Asia? It's the British, Irish and Norwegians who are the most mobile...


What was learned from holiday 2013?

According to Adobe's 2013 eCommerce Benchmark and Holiday Shopping Report:

Social's role in the purchase journey

36% of US consumers say 30% or more of their purchases required some research via social media.

Mobile in-store

Mobile traffic to ecommerce sites rose 18% over 2012 on Thanksgiving Day, peaking in the evening as shoppers accessed mobile sites while in-store. Smartphone apps allowed shoppers to surf and buy while waiting in long lines, and Thanksgiving doorbusters tired shoppers out, who stayed home to tablet-shop on Black Friday instead.

Peak periods

In 2012, Black Friday online sales started picking up at 6am EST, and 2013 the rush began three hours earlier as retail shoppers came home to continue the madness online. Online shopping peaked between 11am and 12pm EST as retailers rang up $150 Million in that period. By-the-hour, Black Friday shopping jumped 39% YoY.

Cyber Monday e-sales peaked between 8 and 9pm, again sales totalling $150 Million (up 16% YoY). 29% of visits and 18% of sales came via smartphones.

"Green Monday" (the Monday following Cyber Monday) is the peak online shopping day in the Nordics, Germany, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Austria and Japan.

Conversion funnel benchmarks

The average add-to-cart rate for non-bouncing traffic during Holiday 2013 was 89% (95% for the best-of-the-best e-tailers). Average checkout initiation rates were 52% on average and 72% among the 'best,' and checkout completion 49% on average and 68% among the 'best.'


The top sites enjoyed 3.26% conversion rate, while the average eked in at just under 2%.


The best-of-the-best killed it with 427% remarketing effectiveness, while average retailers still achieved 270%.

20% of B-o-B traffic came from smartphones vs 12% for average sites, while tablets drew 15% and 11% respectively.


Catch the full holiday 2013 post-mortem here, and join us next post as we cover 7 Critical Success Factors for Ecommerce This Holiday.

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