New York, NY – December 1, 2008-Nielsen Online, a service of the Nielsen Company, reported today that Web traffic from home and work to the Holiday eShopping Index increased 10 percent year over year on Black Friday, growing from 28.8 million unique visitors in 2007 to 31.7 million unique visitors in 2008 across more than 120 representative online retailers.
Holiday eShopping Index Category Growth
Consumer Electronics was the fastest growing product category on Friday, increasing 219 percent from the previous Friday, November 21st. Shopping Comparison/Portals and Toys/Videogames took the No. 2 and No. 3 spots, with 83 and 73 percent Web traffic growth, respectively (see "Table 1: Product Categories ranked by Growth on Black Friday (U.S., Home and Work" in Full PDF Download version of release).
“Even with the weakening economy, an unstable stock market and a rising unemployment rate, Black Friday traffic to online retail sites grew at a double digit rate this year,” said Ken Cassar, vice president, industry insights, Nielsen Online. “Consumers are continuing to shift their holiday shopping to the Web for the convenience of not having to fight the crowds and to further stretch shrinking budgets. The fact that the Shopping Comparison/Portals category was the second fastest growing segment indicates that consumers continue to see the Web as the source for determining the best deals and prices of the season, which we expect to be top of mind for holiday shoppers this year.” Cassar continued, “With the season underway and consumers back at work, it will be interesting to compare activity for Cyber Monday and to see if the initial growth rate we saw on Black Friday holds up throughout the holiday shopping season.”
Black Friday Online Conversations and Consumer Perceptions
To gauge consumer perceptions about Black Friday, Nielsen Online created a Brand Association Map™ (BAM), based on online discussions in blogs and online forums between October 1st and November 22, 2008. With the keyword “Black Friday” at the center, the BAM reveals words and phrases most frequently used when consumers discussed Black Friday. The closer the words are to the center, the greater the association.
See the Black Friday BAM here.
Black Friday Top 10 Online Retail Destinations
eBay was the top online retail destination on Black Friday with 9.8 million unique visitors, while Amazon and Wal-Mart followed with 8.4 million and 6.0 million unique visitors, respectively (See Table 2). Among the top ten online retail destinations, Circuit City was the fastest growing on Friday, increasing 352 percent over the previous Friday. Best Buy ranked No. 2 with a 196 percent increase in Web traffic and Target rounded out the top three with a 136 percent week over week growth. (See "Table 2: Top 10 Online Retailers Ranked by Unique Audience on Black Friday 2008 (U.S., Home and Work) " in Full PDF Download version of release).
About Nielsen Online’s Holiday eShopping Index
The Nielsen Online Holiday eShopping Index is comprised of over 120 representative online retailers across twelve categories, and acts as a barometer to gauge the level of activity at online shopping destinations during the holiday season. The Index illustrates increased shopping activity through category growth.