In the peak holiday season like no other, Adobe is calling for a 33% increase in holiday ecommerce sales from Nov. 1 through Dec. 31, hitting a record $189 billion, equal to two years’ growth from a single year, as retailers, carriers and solution providers alike gear up for a blowout.
Assuming consumers receive another round of stimulus checks from Washington (don’t hold your breath, folks) and stores are forced to close due to pandemic spikes as is happening now, Adobe’s estimate of holiday ecommerce sales bumps another $11 billion, topping $200 billion for a 47% increase.
So much for the unusual early Prime Day from Amazon stealing thunder and dollars from Cyber weekend, as some have predicted, according to Adobe. It’s calling for Black Friday to generate $10 billion in ecommerce sales, a 39% increase and equaling Prime Day, and Cyber Monday reaching $12.7 billion, up 35% from 2019.
“As retailers adapt to consumers’ new behaviors in this pandemic, we expect earlier discounts, more shipping and pick-up options and uncertainty around in-store purchases to drive this year’s online holiday sales to record highs,” said John Copeland, head of Marketing and Customer Insights at Adobe. “This year is unlike any in the past, and for the first time we are no longer referring to peak holiday sales as Cyber Week; it’s now Cyber Month.”
To underline that point, Adobe is calling for every day from Nov. 1-21 to top $2 billion in holiday ecommerce sales, rising to $3 billion plus from Nov. 22–Dec 3. The falloff after that may be attributed to the extreme emphasis on earlier deals and promotions, plus consumers realizing the need to order earlier if they want to get their goodies by Christmas.
In line with numerous reports of millions of first-time ecommerce buyers in 2020, Adobe said 9% of all holiday customers will be “net new online shoppers” due to the pandemic. Another positive for retailers: Adobe predicts conversion rates will increase 13% vs. 2019. Interestingly, average order value (AOV) is predicted to stay flat, perhaps due to consumer caution generally in uncertain times, even as many more are buying online to boost the overall number.
Many shoppers have been supporting smaller-to-midsize retailers during the pandemic to keep them afloat as they pivoted online. This is borne out by Adobe’s findings, as those with revenue in the $10 million-$50 million range are expected to see revenue increase 107% increase, compared to a still healthy 84% gain for major players in the $1 billion-plus category.
Adobe’s findings are based on a survey of over 1,000 U.S. consumers in October 2020. Overall Adobe Analytics crunches data from more than 1 trillion visits to U.S. retail sites and 100 million SKUs from 80 of the 100 largest U.S. retailers.