In a sign of the digital times, a new consumer poll commissioned by Deloitte suggests that shoppers will spend way more money on Cyber Monday than on Black Friday or Thanksgiving.
According to the survey, conducted Oct. 31-Nov. 4 among 1,200 U.S. adults, consumers will spend an average of $170 on Cyber Monday (Nov. 26), more than all other Thanksgiving weekend shopping days.
What’s more, Cyber Monday is poised to suck up nearly half (47 percent) of all online spending over the holiday weekend, with 73 percent of respondents planning to e-shop that day.
That’s not to say that Black Friday has lost its lure. Rather, 81 percent of weekend shoppers said they plan to hit the bricks the day after Thanksgiving, with nearly three-quarters (72 percent) expecting to visit a store before 9:00 a.m.
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Why’s that? Despite a month-long promotional run-up to Black Friday, most holiday shoppers (56 percent) still believe the best deals are available that day, which was the main reason cited, by 82 percent, for braving the crowds on Nov. 23. But another 61 percent, comprised largely of younger consumers, described in-store holiday shopping as a social event, and said they would venture out with family and friends.
Top in-store destinations for Black Friday weekend shoppers will include mass merchants (45 percent), department stores (43 percent), and electronics/office supply stores (33 percent), the survey showed.
The findings were echoed in a separate holiday survey commissioned by boutique tech public relations firm Bospar. While nearly two-thirds (42 percent) of the 1,000 U.S. adults queried this month believe that early holiday promotions diminish the significance of the main sales events, 53 percent still think the best deals are on Black Friday.
“Each year we hear reports that Black Friday is losing its luster,” said Brent Shelton, an online shopping authority with Bospar. “But just as this survey reports, our clients in the thick of the holiday spending frenzy report record participation from consumers on Black Friday, year after year.”
Rod Sides, vice chairman, Deloitte LLP and U.S. retail and distribution leader, concurred. “People have responded to the early promotions that retailers have put in play to outdo the competition, from early Black Friday deals to free shipping, but the event still holds its place as a holiday tradition,” he said. “Most people maintain the perception that the best deals are on Black Friday, but it’s also become a day for spending time with family and friends."
"The same appears to be true for the group of people who have made Thanksgiving Day shopping their family tradition," Sides continued. "We see an even bigger draw toward Cyber Monday, which is set to attract shoppers both in-store and online, and capture the most dollars spent over the weekend.”
Thanksgiving is actually the least popular shopping day of the holiday weekend, the Deloitte poll found, with just 26 percent of respondents planning to visit stores and only 29 percent expecting to shop online. The chief reasons for shopping on turkey day: to get a jump on deals or because it’s a Thanksgiving ritual.
Sides added that despite differing shopper preferences, “The signs are in retailers’ favor heading into the weekend, with traffic spread over multiple shopping days and both online and in-store channels.”