Black Friday 2017 falls on 24th November. It’s a day that continues to evolve every year, shifting with both the advent of new technology and consumer expectations. What ecommerce trends are present for Black Friday 2017?

Mobile evolution

In the US shoppers made $1.2 billion in purchases with their phones and tablets on Black Friday 2016. It’s the first time in US retail history that mobile revenue exceeded $1 billion in one day, according to BusinessWire.

‘51% of online retail sales happened with a mobile device’

In the UK, November 2015 to January 2016, 51% of online retail sales happened with a mobile device, compared to 45% for the same period the previous year. Black Friday 2017 is then set to become even further a mobile-based event.

That said, PC-based conversion rates were at 4% in 2016, still superior to smartphone conversion rates of 1.3% for the same period. The evidence suggests that if merchants streamline their mcommerce buying process to improve conversions, they’ll be in for a very prosperous Black Friday weekend.

Things to consider include cleaning up mobile ads, creating effective CTAs and accommodating the array of different mobile devices and payment methods.

Merging of the online and physical

Shoppers are likely to continue to seek both online and physical shopping experiences, and we can expect to see retailers striving further to accommodate this trend. 42% of in-store shoppers search for information online whilst in a store, some using the internet do to product comparisons or search for reviews, and others using the store’s own app or website to access further information.

‘42% of in-store shoppers search for information online whilst in a store’

The success of click and collect has allowed shoppers to do the searching graft at home rather than trudge round shops, and be less dependent on a courier service, keeping delivery/collection in their own hands. The ability to physically see, try on, test products is also one of the main advantages of brick and mortar, and has never quite (or will ever?) been replicated online.

Website speed

Google’s report published last year entitled ‘The need for mobile speed‘ concluded that 46% of consumers say that waiting for pages to load is their least favorite thing about shopping via mobile. And more importantly 53% of visits to mobile sites are abandoned after 3 seconds. Faster sites had bounce rates that were 35% lower, and sites that loaded in 5 seconds earned almost double the revenue of slower loading sites.

‘47% of customers expect a standard webpage to load in less than 2 seconds…a 1 second delay results in a 7% reduction in conversions’

And of course traditional desktop browsing shouldn’t be forgotten. Skilled compiled 12 case studies in the infographic ‘How Speed Affects Your Website‘ in late 2016, that found 47% of customers expect a standard webpage to load in less than 2 seconds, and that a 1 second delay results in a 7% reduction in conversions.

When you consider the number of sites trying to capitalise on the Black Friday rush, that’s a lot of potential customers being turned away because of poor performance. As a result, expect retailers to up their speed game this Black Friday.

Rogue shopping days

Emerging new shopping days are springing up and will likely pull sales away from Black Friday and Cyber Monday. There’s a new wave of consumers avoiding the now infamous Black shopping days, choosing instead to shop on Green Monday (coined by eBay to describe its best sales day in December, the second Monday) and even Amazon’s Prime Day, finding the best bargains at different times of the year and avoiding the online scramble.

Cyber November

This year the divide between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is looking less and less important. Retailers are also trying to stretch the buzz of Black Friday and Cyber Monday throughout the whole month of November. Black weekend as it’s sometimes known, seems to be set to increasingly consume the Black Friday/Cyber Monday concept, with offers usually lasting all weekend and being recycled on the Monday.

‘Last year shoppers in the US spent close to $39.97 billion online in all of November’

Cyber November also plays into the hands of those who find the online dash too stressful to bother with, and would rather take their time and consider their purchases. Last year shoppers in the US spent close to $39.97 billion online in all of November, up 7.6% compared to 2015. In 2017 expect to see the rise of Cyber November continue.