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.
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.