Press Releases

November 29, 2009

Black Friday Boasts $595 Million in U.S. Online Holiday Spending, Up 11 Percent Versus Year Ago

Strong Lead-Up to Black Friday Boosts Holiday Spending Growth to 3 Percent for the First 27 Days of the Season

RESTON, VA, November 29, 2009 – comScore (NASDAQ : SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today reported holiday season retail e-commerce spending for the first 27 days of the November – December 2009 holiday season. For the holiday season-to-date, $10.57 billion has been spent online, marking a 3-percent increase versus the corresponding days last year. Black Friday (November 27) saw $595 million in online sales, making it the second heaviest online spending day to date in 2009 and representing an 11-percent increase versus Black Friday 2008.

2009 Holiday Season To Date vs. Corresponding Days* in 2008
Non-Travel (Retail) Spending
Excludes Auctions and Large Corporate Purchases
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore, Inc.

Millions ($)
2008 2009 Percent Change
November 1 – 27 $10,254 $10.570 3%
Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 26) $288 $318 10%
Black Friday (Nov. 27) $534 $595 11%

*Corresponding days based on corresponding shopping days (November 2 thru November 28, 2008)

“Black Friday, better known as a shopping bonanza in brick-and-mortar retail stores, is increasingly becoming one of the landmark days in the online holiday shopping world,” said comScore chairman, Gian Fulgoni. “The $595 million in online spending this Black Friday represents the second heaviest online spending day of the season-to-date and a double-digit increase from last year. While this acceleration in spending suggests the online holiday season may be shaping up slightly more optimistically than anticipated, it may also reflect the heavy discounting and creative promotions being put forth by retailers that now encompass the use of social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. Cyber Monday – the traditional kick-off to the online holiday shopping season – and the subsequent weeks will be the real test for how online retailers fare this season. That said, this is a very encouraging start.”

Promotions and Black Friday Bargains Drive Jump in Online Sales Activity

Over the years, the online channel has become an increasingly influential driver in offline shopping behavior. Before making purchases in brick-and-mortar retail locations, consumers have become adept at doing their research beforehand. The array of sites doing round-ups of Black Friday deals are becoming more popular than ever.

comScore studied eight Black Friday deal sites for the five days ending Black Friday (Nov. 23-27) compared to the corresponding days last year, finding that BFads.net led the pack with 3.9 million unique visitors, up 4 percent versus last year. BlackFriday.info followed with 3.5 million visitors, while Black-Friday.net (up 136 percent to 2.3 million visitors) showed the fastest growth.

Unique Visitors to Selected Sites Featuring Black Friday Deals
Nov. 23-27, 2009 vs. Nov. 24-28, 2008
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore, Inc.
  Unique Visitors (000)
Nov. 24-28, 2008 Nov. 23-27, 2009 Percent Change
BFads.net 3,768 3,903 4%
BlackFriday.info 4,154 3,458 -17%
Black-Friday.net 956 2,258 136%
TheBlackFriday.com 1,466 1,370 -7%
BlackFriday.fm 487 608 25%
BlackFriday.com 1,008 550 -45%
BlackFriday.gottadeal.com 862 466 -46%
BlackFriday2009.com N/A 266 N/A

Some other notable findings about Black Friday deal-seeking include:

  • The number of visitors to coupon sites on Black Friday grew 17 percent versus year ago to 3.3 million visitors.
  • BlackFriday.info was the most visited coupon site on Black Friday with 748,000 unique visitors, followed by RetailMeNot.com (356,000 visitors) and Eversave.com (253,000).
  • ShopLocal.com ranked as the most visited comparison shopping site on Black Friday with 2 million visitors, up 31 percent versus year ago.

Amazon Tops among Online Retail Properties on Black Friday

Five retail properties surpassed four million U.S. unique visitors (i.e. four million different people) on Black Friday, with each of these properties experiencing gains versus last year. Amazon Sites was the most visited retail property on Black Friday, growing 28 percent from the corresponding shopping day a year ago, followed closely by Walmart, which grew 22 percent. Apple.com Worldwide Sites (up 39 percent), Target Corporation (up 2 percent) and Best Buy Sites (up 24 percent) rounded out the top five.

Growth in Unique Visitors Among Top 5 Most Visited Retailer Properties on Black Friday
Excludes Auction Sites (e.g. eBay)
Black Friday 2009 vs. Black Friday 2008
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore, Inc.
Retail Property Percent Change in Unique Visitors
Amazon Sites 28%
Walmart 22%
Apple.com Worldwide Sites 39%
Target Corporation 2%
Best Buy Sites 24%

“Much attention has focused on Amazon and Walmart this season, and both retailers performed particularly well online on Black Friday in terms of attracting visitors,” added Mr. Fulgoni. “We will be watching closely to see how these retailers perform during these next critical weeks of the season.”

About comScore

comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR) is a global leader in measuring the digital world and preferred source of digital marketing intelligence. For more information, please visit www.comscore.com/companyinfo.

Contact:
Andrew Lipsman
comScore, Inc.
+1 312 775 6510
press@comscore.com