Five things we learned from Cyber Monday 2019

Based on Adobe Analytics data, $9.4 billion was spent online on the final day of the extended Thanksgiving holiday shopping weekend.
Written by Natalie Gagliordi, Contributor

Consumer spending on Cyber Monday has shattered sales records once again. Based on Adobe Analytics data, $9.4 billion was spent online on the final day of the extended Thanksgiving holiday shopping weekend, beating out last year's record-setting $7.9 sales total. 

Overall, shoppers are spending more than ever before, with a record $81.5 billion spent since the beginning of November. 

Adobe's calculations are based on data from 1 trillion visits to retail websites and 55 million stock keeping units (SKUs): the company measures 80 percent of all online transactions from the top 100 US retailers, and said that three quarters of spending online with the top 500 US retailers goes through its Adobe Marketing Cloud.

Other firms are also sharing interesting data points from the digital shopping holiday. Here are a few key takeaways from the Cyber Monday shopping data compiled by Adobe, Amazon, Shopify and Salesforce:

Cyber Monday reigns supreme

There once was a time when Black Friday was the premier spending day of the holiday season. But those days are long gone, as Cyber Monday continues to out perform Black Friday in terms of sales and traffic to retail websites. As noted above, Cyber Monday sales clocked in at $9.4 billion, while Black Friday hit $7.4 billion.

Between the hours of 10pm to 2am Eastern on Cyber Monday, consumers spent about $2.9 billion online, according to Adobe. From 11pm to 12am Eastern, online sales reached a purchasing rate of about $12 million per minute. 

Over at Amazon, Cyber Monday became the biggest shopping day in the company's history. Presumably, this means Cyber Monday 2019 also topped Prime Day and every other made-up deal day that's come before it.

Thanksgiving weekend deals stretched out

While Cyber Monday claimed the most sales, many retailers stretched out the discounts through Saturday and Sunday. Adobe said Small Business Saturday brought in $3.6 billion in online sales. Through the weekend, consumers spent $7.4 billion, including Super Sunday.

This year there are six fewer days between Cyber Monday and Christmas Day, which forced retailers to start offering deals earlier and for a longer period of time in order to avoid lost revenue. Every day in November surpassed $1 billion in sales, while 12 days broke the $2 billion threshold, according to Adobe. Thanksgiving Day alone drove $4.2 billion in sales at 14.5% growth year-over-year.

Mobile is driving online sales growth

About $3 billion worth of products were purchased via smartphones on Cyber Monday, according to Adobe, marking the highest year-over-year dollar growth ever for these small screen devices. Shopify's data supports this conclusion, as the company said 69% of all sales on Shopify-based websites were made on mobile phones or tablets, while just 31% occurred from a desktop. 

Similarly, Salesforce found that mobile drove the most digital traffic and orders compared to any other device. About 73% of all website traffic and 55% of all purchases came from a smartphone, according to Salesforce. 

BOPIS is on the rise

Any retailer worth its salt is now offering Buy Online Pick Up In-Store services, which allow shoppers to place orders online and pick them them up in a brick-and-mortar store. The service offers convenience and more immediate satisfaction for consumers, but it's also a big driver of sales and conversion for retailers. 

According to Adobe, BOPIS has grown over 40% year-over-year, with consumers 20% more likely to convert with retailers who offer BOPIS compared to those that don't. On Cyber Monday, conversion at BOPIS retailers outperformed non-BOPIS retailers by 45%, while Black Friday BOPIS retailer conversion outperformed non-BOPIS by a 64%.

Amazon and other online giants outperform SMBs

While smaller retailers benefit from the spotlight of the holiday shopping weekend, larger retailers with sales over $1 billion annually ended up making the most over the shopping period. On Cyber Monday, large retailers saw a 540% boost in sales over an average day, while smaller merchants lagged behind with a 337% increase. 

Amazon didn't publish its exact sales numbers, but the company said it broke its own records for Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

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