Holiday SHopping

As the toy industry barrels into the shortest holiday selling season since 2013, initial retail sales numbers from the traditional Thanksgiving weekend kickoff are looking good.

According to the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Prosper Insights & Analytics, a record 189.6 million shoppers loaded their carts from Thanksgiving Day through Cyber Monday. That’s a 14% increase over 165.8 million shoppers last year. As consumer habits continue to flex between physical and digital retail, some interesting numbers emerged this year, with Black Friday surpassing Cyber Monday as the busiest day for online shopping for the first time ever. On Friday, 93.2 million shoppers surfed the web for versus 83.3 million checking out digital deals on Monday.

Related: The Toy Insider Experts Offer Tips to Win the 2019 Holiday Shopping Season

Consumer confidence appears to be up with shoppers spending an average of $361.90 on holiday items over the weekend, up 16% compared to $313.29 last year. Consumers spent 71% on gifts, and 33% of gift spending was on toys.

NRF notes the seamless shopping experience as a big driver with 124 million consumer shopping stores while 142.2 million shopped websites, and 75.7 million did both. Black Friday remains the busiest day for in-store shopping activity with 84.2 million shoppers braving the crowds in search of great deals.

About the author

James Zahn

James Zahn

James Zahn, AKA The Rock Father, is Editor-in-Chief of The Toy Book, a Senior Editor at The Toy Insider and The Pop Insider, and Editor of The Toy Report, The Toy Book‘s weekly industry newsletter. As a pop culture and toy industry expert, Zahn has appeared as a panelist and guest at events including Comic-Con International: San Diego (SDCC) Wizard World Chicago, and the ASTRA Marketplace & Academy. Zahn has more than 30 years of experience in the entertainment, retail, and publishing industries, and is frequently called upon to offer expert commentary for publications such as Forbes, Marketwatch, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, USA Today, Reuters, the Washington Post, and more. James has appeared on History Channel’s Modern Marvels, was interviewed by Larry King and Anderson Cooper, and has been seen on Yahoo! Finance, CNN, CNBC, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, CBS, WGN, The CW, and more. Zahn joined the Adventure Media & Events family in 2016, initially serving as a member of the Parent Advisory Board after penning articles for the Netflix Stream Team, Fandango Family, PBS KIDS, Sprout Parents (now Universal Kids), PopSugar, and Chicago Parent. He eventually joined the company full time as a Senior Editor and moved up the ranks to Deputy Editor and Editor-in-Chief.