ICSC: Despite Strong Thanksgiving Weekend Deals, Shoppers Expect Best Is Yet to Come in December

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ICSC: Despite Strong Thanksgiving Weekend Deals, Shoppers Expect Best Is Yet to Come in December

The 2016 International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) Thanksgiving/Black Friday Shopping Report shows that three quarters of Americans spent the same or more this year than last year, and 44 percent of that spend was on gifts for other people. Americans shopping on Thanksgiving and/or Black Friday spent an average of $373, including approximately $100 on dining and entertainment in a shopping center.

"While the holiday shopping season has lengthened and includes all of November and December, the Black Friday and Thanksgiving results are important, and this year serve as a positive indicator for the holiday season," said ICSC president and CEO Tom McGee.

Omnichannel retailers benefited the most with 89 percent of shoppers spending at stores with both a physical and an online presence. Further, 80 percent of spending took place with retailers that have a physical presence, whereas only 18 percent occurred online with pure play retailers. For those shoppers who purchased online and picked up the item in the store (28 percent), 64 percent went on to buy something else when they collected their purchase. This is an increase of six percentage points, year-over-year.

Shopping wasn't the only activity consumers sought; of those who visited a center on Thanksgiving and/or Black Friday, upwards of 68 percent participated in non-shopping activities. This means they took in movies, dined at restaurants, visited Santa, and more.

"Today's consumers visit their local malls and shopping centers for shopping, dining and entertainment. They also expect a seamless digital and physical experience, and more and more are turning to retailers that offer this winning, omnichannel combination," continued McGee." Clearly, the vast majority of shopping takes place with omnichannel retailers. Consumers demand an integrated experience and spend much more here than with online only players."

Spending totals for Black Friday & Thanksgiving
The average Thanksgiving and/or Black Friday shopper spent $373 on those two days, divided as follows:
  • $165.20 spent on holiday gifts (44 percent of total expenditure)
  • $134.60 spent on non-gift merchandise (36 percent of total expenditure)
  • $48.20 spent on dining (13 percent of total expenditure)$25.20 spent on entertainment (7 percent of total expenditure)
Shoppers were highly motivated
Consumers knew what they wanted, especially Thanksgiving shoppers. The average shopper made purchases at 78 percent of the 3.9 stores they visited on Thanksgiving Day. On Black Friday, the shopper visited 4.3 stores and made a purchase at 67 percent of those stores. All numbers were in line with 2015.

Consumers' expectations for December
Although the popular Thanksgiving retail weekend has passed, many shoppers expect the best is yet to come with regards to shopping deals and steals. When asked for their predictions for December:
  • 61 percent anticipate similar deals/promotions
  • 29 percent of consumers say they think the deals/promotions in December will be better than what was found over the past weekend
  • Just 10 percent expect the deals/promotions won't be as good