On Smartphone-Optimized Sites, Black Friday Sales Up 187%, Thanksgiving Sales Up 258% Over Last Year

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Mobile’s portion of online shopping continues to grow – this Black Friday, for example, smartphones drove a quarter of all online traffic, and 7.2% of all online sales, according to IBM Benchmark data. But the traffic and sales growth among retailers who have optimized their sites for mobile is, for obvious reasons, even more pronounced. Compared to last year, smartphone-optimized sites saw 75.65% more visits, and sales were up by 186.54% on Black Friday 2013 compared with the same day last year.

This data comes from Branding Brand, an e-commerce platform which designs mobile experiences for more than 200 of the top retailers worldwide, including American Eagle Outfitters, Costco, Ralph Lauren, Sephora, Calvin Klein, Crate & Barrel, Nasty Gal, Kate Spade, Bath & Body Works, Brookstone, The Children’s Place, Steve Madden, Timberland, Tommy Hilfiger, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and dozens of others.

Their Mobile Commerce Index then samples trends from across the company’s client base in a number of industries, like apparel, health and beauty, and home goods, allowing for insight that’s specific to those commerce sites which have been built for smartphones, as opposed to non-optimized sites browsed on mobile, but designed for the desktop. It’s the largest index of its kind, in terms of looking into smartphone-optimized website data and trends for online retailers.

According Branding Brand, iOS sent 66.62% of mobile site visits on Black Friday, while Android sent just 32.97% of the 9.3 million total visits accounted for across the sample 152 smartphone-optimized websites. These visits produced 174,111 orders, with a $93.20 average order value – an increase of 22.08% in average order value over Black Friday 2012. (Also of note, the 2012 Branding Brand Index had only accounted for 46 smartphone sites – another figure which has increased year-over-year as Branding Brand itself grew, raising another $9.5 million in the process.)

In addition, Branding Brand’s index saw smartphone traffic accounting for 34.36% of its clients’ total e-commerce traffic on Black Friday – a figure that’s higher than the nearly 25% which IBM’s Benchmark data reported from a wider swath of 800 some online retailers and million of transactions. But that makes sense because Branding Brand’s clients are those who have chosen to embrace mobile by building native apps and optimized sites.

And since Black Friday scooted its way into Thanksgiving Day this year, it’s worth also noting that smartphone-optimized sites drove 69% more visits and increased sales by 258.18% this year over Thanksgiving 2012, according to Branding Brand’s Index. Average order values were roughly the same as on Black Friday, however, at $92.55. (Cyber Monday Sales are still in the works as today’s the day. We’ll update later when they become available.)

Branding Brand’s data generally holds up against other industry surveys and trends. For instance, mobile app performance management company Crittercism just recently commissioned a third-party survey into mobile shopping trends to learn more about users’ attitudes toward mobile (via Dimensional Research).

They found that 86% of U.S. users have made a purchase using either a smartphone or tablet, with 69% of iOS users having made a purchase of over $100, while 43% of Android users did – figures that indicate mobile shopping is not seen by consumers as some separate lighter-weight behavior meant only for minor purchases, but one that, for many users, is not much different in terms of spending limits or order size, versus shopping online via the desktop.

Update: Branding Brand’s Cyber Monday data just came through last night (Tues., 12/3/13). Based on Adobe’s reports, Branding Brand was responsible for nearly 10% of total US Cyber Monday sales on smartphones. Below are the new figures:

  • 8,385,041 visitors (66.75% iOS; 32.87% Android)
  • 60,788,678 page views (66.01% iOS; 33.57% Android)
  • 190,351 orders (70.06% iOS; 29.72% Android)
  • $82.16 average order value ($83.23 iOS; $79.68 Android)
  • 29.31% of total e-commerce traffic came from smartphones

These represent the following gains over 2012:

  • Visits increased 78.02%
  • Page views increased 103.91%
  • Average order value decreased 4.44%
  • Mobile sales increased 149.91%