Thanksgiving Weekend Sales

According to the National Retail Federation, more than 141 million unique shoppers have already or will have shopped by the end of the big Thanksgiving weekend, up from 139 million over the same time frame last year.

For those who shopped multiple times over the weekend, more than 248 million waited in line, took advantage of big discounts offered throughout the mall and shopped on retailers websites, up from 247 million shoppers last year. Traffic on Thanksgiving Day itself grew 27 percent as nearly 45 million shoppers, or 31.8 percent of holiday shoppers, took advantage of special “turkey day” savings offers, up from 35 million in 2012. Black Friday was the biggest day: more than 92 million people shopped (65.2%) for apparel, electronics and more, up from nearly 89 million last year.

Low prices helped keep Americans’ budgets in check this weekend: on average, shoppers spent $407.02 from Thursday through Sunday, down from $423.55 last year. Total spending is estimated to reach $57.4 billion.

"Cold weather, unique promotions and unbeatable prices put millions of Americans in the mood to shop for holiday gifts this weekend,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “Retailers’ late night and early morning promotions struck just the right chord for those hoping to kick off the holiday shopping season with friends and family. With only a few weeks until the big day, retailers will continue to aggressively promote their in-store and online offerings, looking to entice today’s very budget-conscious and value-focused shopper.”

Thanksgiving weekend deals are especially enticing to young people. More than three-quarters (76.2%) of 18 – 34 year olds shopped or planned to shop over the holiday weekend – higher than any other age group – with Black Friday being the most popular day (70.9%).

Shoppers Visited Stores Earlier

Eager to kick off the holiday shopping season, one-quarter (25.4%) of holiday shoppers say they were at stores by 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving night; nearly four in 10 (37.3%) were at stores by midnight. Early hours aren’t for everyone however; more than one-third (35.8%) didn’t arrive at stores until 10 a.m. or later.

Advertising & Emails Helped Shoppers Find Bargains

According to the survey, almost half (49.2%) of holiday shoppers over the weekend sought out information about promotions and sales via advertising circulars, and one-third (33.0%) conducted online searches to find the best deals. Additionally, 36.8 percent made sure to keep track of emails from retailers, 16.4 percent reviewed retail companies’ Facebook accounts for information, and 12.2 percent browsed stores to find bargains and sales.

How were your holiday weekend sales? Our early reports from Trek dealers has been mixed. We've got high hopes for the holiday season as a whole.

About The Author

Ryan Atkinson

Ryan Atkinson

Ryan is a proven marketing professional who entered the cycling industry in 1994.