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Cyber Weekend 2023 Recap

As the holiday season approaches, consumers around the globe eagerly anticipate the thrill of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the twin titans of shopping extravaganzas. In 2023, these iconic shopping events have once again lived up to their reputation, offering an array of unbeatable deals and trends that have left shoppers both delighted and overwhelmed.  Check out our top takeaways from this year’s event.

Online Shopping Dominance

eCommerce saw continued success throughout this year’s Cyber Weekend.  In fact, US eCommerce sales on Black Friday saw 8.5% growth year-over-year, while in-store sales only saw a 1.1% increase. eCommerce giants and small businesses alike showcased a plethora of discounts, enticing consumers with the convenience of shopping from the comfort of their homes.

Mobile Shopping Takes the Lead

As smartphones continue to be an integral part of our daily lives, mobile shopping saw a significant surge this Black Friday and Cyber Monday. In fact, mobile commerce made up about 54% of online sales.  Retailers optimized their websites and apps for seamless mobile experiences, making it easier for consumers to browse and make purchases on their phones. The convenience of mobile shopping contributed to the overall success of the online shopping bonanza.

Buy Now, Pay Later Options Dominate

Over the last few years, the usage of buy now, pay later (BNPL) options have surged.  This past Cyber Weekend, approximately $760 million worth of online orders were placed using a BNPL service.  On Black Friday alone, Klarna (a BNPL platform), saw a 30% increase in orders.  Consumers love the flexibility these platforms offer, and it leads to higher sales for retailers.

Top Products & Retailers

Amazon, Walmart, Target, Best Buy and Costco were the top five retailers by sales this past Cyber Weekend. Additionally, 72% of shoppers made purchases from at least three retailers over the course of the weekend, and 27% purchased from more than five.

Tech Bonanza

Tech enthusiasts were in for a treat this year, as cutting-edge gadgets and electronics took center stage. From state-of-the-art smartphones to sleek laptops and smart home devices, major tech retailers offered jaw-dropping discounts. The demand for the latest tech gear reached unprecedented heights, as sales were up 171% over the weekend, signaling a growing reliance on technology in our daily lives.

Fashion Frenzy

Fashionistas also had their moment in the spotlight during this year's shopping extravaganza. Apparel sales saw a 154% sales spike over the course of the weekend.  High-end brands and popular retailers alike rolled out the red carpet for fashion-forward consumers, with discounts on clothing, accessories, and footwear. Sustainable and ethically sourced fashion items gained traction, reflecting a shift towards more conscious consumer choices.

Trends from aiCommerce

Return on Advertising Spend and Conversion Rates:

As of Tuesday, our data indicates a 15% decrease in ROAS for Sponsored Products and a 30% decrease for Sponsored Brands. Expect some normalization as attribution data continues to trickle in but this is also a stark reflection in the amount of advertising pressure that coincides with intense shopping periods. Brands should focus on content and creative optimizations, paired with strategic discounts and advertising practices focused on awareness and retargeting to make the most of their ad dollars.

CPC:

Sponsored Brands CPC experienced a notable year-over-year increase of 30%, we found this to be quite concerning as it shows the number of sellers who are expanding into this ad type is growing at a staggering rate. Unexpectedly, Sponsored Products only saw a slight uptick for Cyber Monday, notching about a 10% increase compared to 2022. I would have expected the opposite as SP is generally more susceptible to competitive pressure as it’s available to all sellers, regardless of brand registry status.

Cyber Monday CPC’s showed higher rates than those on Black Friday, it seems many brands were seeking to take advantage of what they thought to be the final push before Christmas. CPC was up 14% for Sponsored Brands and 8% for Sponsored Products comparatively. 



In conclusion, Cyber Weekend 2023 has been a whirlwind of excitement and innovation, showcasing the evolving landscape of consumerism in our digital age. From the convenience of online shopping to the irresistible allure of unbeatable deals, this year's extravaganza has left an indelible mark on both consumers and retailers. The trends witnessed, from the surge in tech purchases to the growing importance of sustainability, reflect a dynamic shift in consumer preferences. As the holiday season unfolds, Cyber Weekend 2023 will serve as a testament to the ever-changing nature of the retail landscape and the boundless possibilities that technology brings to the world of eCommerce.

 

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