- Online shopping has enabled Black Friday to start earlier than ever.
- Black Friday is no longer creeping into just Thanksgiving, but now even the Wednesday before.
- Online shopping on Thanksgiving surged this year, projected to grow by 29% over last year.
- Many deal items were out of stock before Black Friday even began.
- It’s clearer than ever that Thanksgiving, not Black Friday, is now the official kickoff to the holiday shopping season.
Black Friday is traditionally considered the kickoff to the holiday shopping season.
After all, it’s the Friday after Thanksgiving, when shoppers realize they need to get a move on their holiday shopping and stores offer big sales. Several have begun opening in the afternoon on Thanksgiving, known as “Black Friday creep.” That’s still happening this year, with many stores opening as early as in previous years – or earlier than ever before.
But now the proliferation of online shopping has blown the doors off Black Friday creep. Thanksgiving has replaced Black Friday as the kickoff to the holiday shopping season, at least online.
Advances in online-shopping technology and the proliferation of smartphones have led to a dramatic increase in sales on Thanksgiving this year.
For many online stores, the sales switch flipped at midnight on Wednesday.
Shoppers are predicted to have spent a record $3.7 billion on Thanksgiving once the official tally is in, according to Adobe Analytics. That would be up a whopping 29% over last year, a far larger increase than the year-over-year growth expected for Black Friday (17.2%) and Cyber Monday (17.6%).
Much of the growth has come from sales made on smartphones, which shoppers are using with increasing frequency, especially on Thanksgiving, according to Adobe. This year, they’ve accounted for 36.7% of all sales by revenue, up substantially over the 29.1% share last year.
Online doorbusters with steep discounts are by nature limited in stock. With the deals starting so much earlier than Black Friday, many items that stores were hyping up were out of stock a full day before.
It’s clearer than ever that Thanksgiving, not Black Friday, is the official kickoff to the holiday shopping season in the minds of consumers and retailers.
More on Black Friday 2018:
- Black Friday deals sold out at stores like Walmart and Target before Friday even began – and people are furious
- Macy’s, Best Buy, Kohl’s, and JCPenney are being slammed for being open on Thanksgiving – and some people are threatening not to shop with them this holiday season
- Walmart says it’s offering thousands more deals than last year on Cyber Monday in a direct shot at Amazon’s most valuable day
- Walmart shoppers are complaining that stores are running out of iPhones as Black Friday sales begin
- This Black Friday is set to be the best America has seen in years