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11/30/2021

How retailers fared during the November shopping holidays

According to research from Placer.ai and Numerator, grocery chains and retailers performed well during the past holiday weekend.
Zachary Russell
Associate Editor
Zachary Russell profile picture

Amid supply chain and inflation challenges, retailers succeeded on Turkey Wednesday, Black Friday and Cyber Weekend.

Retailers with own brands scored big on Turkey Wednesday this year, according to foot traffic analytics firm Placer.ai. The day before Thanksgiving is typically one of the busiest grocery days of the year, and new data shows that several grocery chains and big box stores saw increased visits compared to last year.

The winners in the grocery category this Turkey Wednesday were Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods, which saw visits increase 26.5% and 20.8% this year over last. Prior to the holiday, Trader Joe’s curated a hefty list of own brand Thanksgiving items. All seven chains saw visits increase year-over-year, and all but one (Whole Foods) saw them increase over 2019’s Turkey Wednesday.

Target and Walmart both saw large traffic increases this year compared to last. Target saw visits up 22.1% from 2020, and up 14% over Turkey Wednesday 2019. Walmart’s visits were up 23.2% over 2020, and 3.1% over 2019.

In the club sector, Costco saw a 25.4% increase compared to last year, with Sam’s Club up 30.2%. BJ’s, which touted deals on its own brands ahead of Thanksgiving and is coming off of a strong third quarter of this year, saw a 23.1% increase compared to last year’s Thanksgiving Eve. However, there was little or no growth compared to Turkey Wednesday 2019. Compared to two years ago, visits were down 2.5% at Costco, down 0.3% at BJ’s, and exactly the same at Sam’s Club.

The full report from Placer.ai can be found here.

On Black Friday, online share grew again this year, accounting for 38.1% of overall sales on Black Friday, up 11.5 points from last year, according to data group Numerator. Amazon won for the second year in a row, capturing 17.7% of overall Black Friday sales.

Walmart was the top retailer among low income shoppers (<$40k), while middle income ($40k-80k) and high income (>$80k) shoppers spent more at Amazon. Amazon grew share with all income groups, but most significantly with middle income consumers. High income individuals saw the largest share growth online compared to low and middle income. Amazon’s growth was twice as high as low income shoppers (+14.1 pts vs. +6.2 pts).

According to more research from Numerator, 1 in 3 consumers cited inflation as the reason behind higher Cyber Weekend spending. Of the 22% of consumers who said they spent more on Cyber Weekend 2021 than last year, one-third (33%) attributed their higher spend to rising prices. Inflation had consumers spending less this Cyber Weekend. Among those who claimed they spent less this year, 30% said it was because they had less disposable income due to rising prices on everyday goods.

The full report from Numerator can be found here.