Retailers in apparel, jewelry and beauty saw an increase in average order values of between 5% – 20% this Black Friday, despite offering steep discounts, according to new insights from Bluecore. The retail marketing technology company reports that 54% of Black Friday 2019 purchases were made by first time-buyers and predicts that 22% of these new customers will become repeat buyers within 108 days. The complete report is available here.
Bluecore’s platform manages personalized digital campaigns for more than 400 retail brands, including Staples, Express, and TomboyX, representing a cumulative product set rivaled only by Amazon. These brands rely on Bluecore to create and deliver individualized communications to their more than 500 million unique customers, based on customer’s specific behaviors and product interactions.
For the second year in a row, Bluecore looked at shoppers’ real-time and historical Black Friday buying patterns and product interactions (including purchases) across 158 retail brands in multiple retail categories: Apparel (51), Footwear (22), Home (15), Technology (7), Beauty (13), Jewelry (7) and Other (43).
The resulting data offers insights into how Black Friday 2019 stacked up to Black Friday 2018, as well as to a typical day. It also looks at the past year to predict what retailers can expect from new 2019 Black Friday customers in 2020.
Detailed Black Friday 2019 findings from Bluecore include:
- Nearly a quarter of first-time Black Friday shoppers will buy from brands again in 2020. In 2018, more than 6% of Black Friday 2018 customers purchased again during the holiday season and 22% became repeat buyers within an average of 108 days after their initial purchase, with an average of 1.7 orders in since Black Friday 2018.
- Despite heavy discounts, many retailers saw an increase in average order values. For every dollar spent on a typical day, retailers in some categories saw an increase in average order value on Black Friday 2019: Apparel ($1.06), Beauty ($1.20), Jewelry ($1.05). Other categories experienced a decrease in average order value: Home ($.95); Footwear ($.93); and Technology ($.63).
- On average, customers researched the products they wanted to buy two weeks in advance of purchasing. The percentage of shoppers who viewed a product at least two weeks prior to a Black Friday 2019 purchase: Apparel (39%), Beauty (36%), Jewelry (38%), Home (34%); Footwear (23%); and Technology (37%).
- Footwear, Jewelry, Technology and Home retailers saw the largest percentage of first-time buyers with 68% of buyers purchasing from footwear retailers for the first time. Jewelry, Technology and Home retailers seeing 65% of all customers purchasing for the first-time.
- Black Friday traffic drops for all retail categories except Footwear and Home. Technology sees biggest drop. While retailers in all categories experienced significant traffic increases compared to a typical day, overall Black Friday traffic was down from 2018 traffic in all but two categories: Apparel (230% increase in traffic in 2019, compared to a 260% increase in 2018), Beauty (240% in 2019, 260% in 2018), Jewelry (180% in 2019, 210% in 2018), Home (190% in 2019, 170% in 2018); Footwear (260% in 2019, 240% in 2018); and Technology (210% in 2019, 270% in 2018).
“It is extremely expensive for ecommerce retailers to acquire new customers, so shopping holidays like Black Friday, where we’re seeing an average of 54% of purchases from new customers, are critical to next year’s growth,” said Fayez Mohamood, CEO of Bluecore “Even more important than first-time buyer numbers is the number of new shoppers that become repeat buyers over time. Brands can influence second-time purchases by engaging these new customers immediately with relevant digital communications. Those that do can expect to see nearly a quarter (22%) of new customers become repeat shoppers in 2020–in response to lesser or no discounts.”
Bluecore is a retail marketing technology company that’s reimagining the way retailers communicate with shoppers. Through its 2019 launches of Bluecore Communicate™ and Bluecore Site™, the company introduced retailers to a fundamentally different approach to digital marketing. For the first time ever, retailers are able to personalize 100% of consumer communications delivered by email and throughout the shopping experience. Bluecore replaces manual processes with an intelligent, AI-driven workflow and pioneered the industry’s first engagement-based pricing model. Retailers can now manage their full email program, as well as all on-site communications, from a single interface. As a result, the Bluecore platform doubles email revenue, reduces production time, and increases customer retention and lifetime value for more than 400 of the fastest-growing retailers, including Staples, Tommy Hilfiger, The North Face, TomboyX, Bass Pro Shops.