CEO Sharon Price John says Build-A-Bear’s old e-commerce system is a big reason for disappointing online sales in December.
Online sales are up 13.6% on Thanksgiving Day over last year as of 3 p.m. Eastern time, Adobe says. Retailers offer big discounts and consumers in ever-larger numbers shop on their mobile devices.
Many consumers shopped from their smartphones or tablets before, during and after Thanksgiving dinner Thursday.
As of 3 p.m. Eastern time, Adobe Inc.’s Adobe Digital Insights unit reported that online sales were up 13.6% over last year, and that mobile sales were up 58.6%.
“Thanksgiving Day is still on track to either hit or come close to $2 billion, although heavy discounting seen in the early hours of the day has slowed revenue growth,” Adobe reported. Earlier in the day, Adobe had projected a record $2 billion in online sales on Thanksgiving Day. Adobe, which bases its estimate on results from the hundreds of major e-commerce sites that use its services, noted that consumers were taking advantage they find in paid search ads and on coupon sites like RetailMeNot.
Adobe said that as of 3 p.m. Eastern search ads were driving 33.3% of retailers’ web sales, “shopper helper sites” such as blogs, coupon sites and review sites 20.7%, email 17.6%, online display ads 2.3% and social networks 1.2%.
Mobile devices accounted for 54% of visits to retail sites—44% coming from smartphones and 10% from tablets—and 39% of purchases.
Adobe estimates online sales through 3 p.m. Eastern totaled $1.15 billion, including $449 million from mobile devices ($322 from smartphones and $127 million from tablets.) Personal computers accounted for the remaining $702 million in online sales through the first 15 hours of Thanksgiving Day.
Retailers promoted heavier online discounts early on Thanksgiving Day than they did last year, Adobe says
Discounts on tablet computers, for example, averaged 25.1%, 12.9% higher than on Thanksgiving Day last year, Adobe says. “Appliances and TVs launched in 2016 are also seeing bigger discounts than comparable products last year (5.7% and 6.9%, respectively), as well as video game consoles (5.6%). Computers and Furniture & Bedding are trending at similar discount levels to last year (10.6% and 6.4%, respectively. Appliances and TVs launched in 2016 are also seeing bigger discounts than comparable products last year (5.7% and 6.9%, respectively), as well as video game consoles (5.6%).”
More consumers were seeing out-of-stock messages on retail websites by the afternoon—7.8% versus 6.4% as of 11 a.m. Eastern, when Adobe issued its first Thanksgiving Day report.
Adobe analyst Tamara Gaffney pointed to the growth in consumers shopping on mobile devices on Turkey Day. “Thanksgiving has become the day where consumers ‘shop on the sly,’ as nearly a quarter of people we surveyed said they use mobile devices so they aren’t obvious to friends and family at the dinner table,” Gaffney says “We’ve also seen larger pricing decreases come into play in key categories, such as tablets and toys, which could affect the final numbers to come in just shy of the predicted $2 billion.”
Among Adobe’s other findings earlier on Thanksgiving Day:
- To date, the holiday season (Nov. 1-23) has brought in $27.2 billion in online, including ($8 billion via mobile, revenue—4.28% year-over-year growth). That growth rate was reduced by a downturn in online shopping right after the election. But shoppers have bounded back. Nov. 23 saw sales of $1.57 billion, a 19% gain over a year earlier and $92 million above Adobe’s forecast of $1.48 billion. For the 2016 holiday shopping season so far, 22 of the 23 days have been billion-dollar days.
- Out-of-stock notifications at retail websites are at 6.4% vs. 11% last year. Among electronics are, items at highest risk of being out of stock are: NES Classic Edition, New Nintendo 3DS Super Mario and PlayStation VR Launch Bundle. Among toys: Hatchimals, Speak Out Game, PJ Masks, and Cozmo by Anki.
- Conversion rates are 2.9% for desktops, 3.2% for tablets and 1.5% for smartphones (compared to holiday season averages 3.2%, 2.9% and 1.3%, respectively).
- Top-selling electronics products ae: iPads, Samsung 4K TVs and PlayStation 4. For toys: scooters and vehicles for kids, Lego Dimensions and Shopkins.
- On Thursday morning, the as share of sales from email increased to 15.7% (up from 15% earlier in th emonth); search was 35.2% (down from 40%) and what Adobe refers to as “shopper helper” sites, such as blogs and coupon sites, 20.7% (up from 16%). Display ads, at 2.3%, and social media, 1.5% both saw upticks (from 0.2% and 0.8%, respectively).
Who has the hottest items and lowest prices?
Over the days immediately before Thanksgiving through Nov. 29 analytics vendor Ugam is monitoring leading web retailers to maintain an updated list of 100 top-trending electronics and 100 top-trending toys and games. In electronics category, it is comparing Amazon.com Inc., Best Buy Co. Inc., Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and the Jet.com marketplace, which is owned by Wal-Mart. In the toys category, it is comparing Amazon, Wal-Mart, Toys R Us Inc. and Jet.
Ugam found today that Amazon had the lowest price online on 20% of the 100 hottest electronics products among five major e-retail sites, followed by Wal-Mart at 16%, Best Buy at 13%, and Target and Jet 11%. In toys, Amazon was lowest on 26% of items, Wal-Mart 20%, Toys R Us 16%, Jet 8% and Target 0%.
Ugam reported today that Amazon had 96 of the top 100 electronics products, followed by Wal-Mart and Best Buy at 80, Jet at 66 and Target 62. Amazon and Wal-Mart both increased their online assortment among these hot-selling items by 3% since Tuesday, Ugam says.
Amazon had all 100 of the hottest toys today, Wal-Mart 95, Toys R Us 79, Target 74 and Jet 59. The big change, Ugam says, was Jet increasing its selection of these toys by 44% since Tuesday.
On Nov. 23, the day before Thanksgiving, Ugam found that Amazon.com Inc. carried 93 out of the holiday season’s 100 top-trending electronics, making it the assortment leader in that category, followed by Best Buy Co. Inc. , which had 79. Wal-Mart was a close third, with 77 items, while Jet had 37. On Nov. 22, the percentages for each retailer were the same. Amazon also leads in toys. On each day, Amazon had with 99 of the 100 top-trending toys and games, followed by Wal-Mart Stores Inc., with 92, Toys R Us with77 of the top toys, and Jet with 41.