The holiday shopping season runs from Nov. 1 to Dec. 31 according to the National Retail Federation.
WASHINGTON – National Retail Federation statistics show that a record 196.7 million Americans shopped both in stores and online during the five-day period from Thanksgiving Day to Cyber Monday.
The annual survey released by the NRF and Prosper Insights & Analytics shows that the total number of shoppers grew by nearly 17 million from 2021 and is the highest figure since 2017.
“The Thanksgiving holiday shopping weekend is a tradition treasured by many American families,” said Matthew Shay, NRF president and CEO. “As inflationary pressures persist, consumers have responded by stretching their dollars in any way possible. Retailers have responded accordingly, offering shoppers a season of buying convenience, matching sales and promotions across online and in-store channels to accommodate their customers at each interaction.
“It is important to note that while some may claim that retail sales gains are the result of higher prices, they must acknowledge the historic growth in consumers who are shopping in-store and online during the long Thanksgiving holiday weekend and into Cyber Monday. It is consumer demand that is driving growth.”
Retailers across the U.S. reported a sizable uptick of in-store shoppers. More than 122.7 million people visited bricks-and-mortar stores over the weekend, up 17% from 2021. Although at a slower pace, the number of online shoppers also grew.
Black Friday continues to reign as the most favored day for in-store shopping. Approximately 72.9 million consumers opted for a more traditional in-person shopping experience, up from 66.5 million in 2021. The Saturday after Thanksgiving followed suit, with 63.4 million in-store shoppers, up from 51 million last year. A majority (77%) of Saturday shoppers indicated they shopped specifically for Small Business Saturday.
The most popular day for online shopping was also Black Friday, which continues a trend that started in 2019. Roughly 87.2 million consumers shopped online during Black Friday this year, in line with 2021. Similar to last year, 77 million people shopped online on Cyber Monday. A record 59% of online Cyber Monday shoppers used their mobile device, up from 52% in 2021.
The vast majority of Thanksgiving weekend shoppers (90%) felt the deals were the same or better than last year.
“While Thanksgiving is no longer the starting point for holiday shopping, the five-day shopping period still plays an important role in the overall holiday season,” said Phil Rist, Prosper executive vice president of strategy. “On average, consumers say they are almost halfway (47%) done with their holiday shopping at this point in time, leaving plenty of room for additional purchases in the remaining weeks of the year.”
NRF defines the holiday season as November 1 through December 31 and has forecast that retail sales will grow between 6% and 8% over 2021 to between $942.6 billion and $960.4 billion.
The survey of 3,326 adult consumers was conducted Nov. 23-27 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.8 percentage points.