Thanksgiving Day, web searches and traffic for online retailers during the holidays were significantly down as compared to previous years, according to research from Experian Hitwise.As we reported
However, this Black Friday showed a 4 percent increase in site visits versus Thanksgiving Day traffic - a stat that usually falls between those two days. The retail site that got the lion's share of traffic this year was Amazon.com, which netted 13.55 percent of the traffic seen by the top 500 retail websites. Read on for a few surprising stats that might signal changes in the U.S. economy - and changes in how U.S. consumers will be doing their holiday shopping.
Interestingly, Apple's website saw the largest increase - by a huge margin - between Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday. Overnight, their traffic skyrocketed 110 percent. Traditionally, Apple's online deals for this red-letter day in commerce were modest at best. However, this year, rumors of substantial discounts were leaked online and spread like wildfire.
The lesson: If you want to see a ridiculous upswing in traffic on a major American retail date, maintain relative stinginess and secrecy, then "leak" good tidings of great joy just before the big day.
Other sites that saw a significant traffic increase in this 48-hour period include Staples (47 percent), Dell (40 percent) and Amazon (9 percent).
So, Apple, Staples and Dell take the cake for getting the greatest traffic spikes overnight; how did websites fare on Black Friday overall?
As you can see in the graph below, Amazon and Walmart each performed admirably. What's more, most sites saw a marginal increase in traffic over last year's Black Friday traffic - as you'll recall, the global economy had recently tanked. Do we see this as a sign of tentative optimism about the economy, at least on the part of American consumers?
Finally, who got the most downstream traffic from Black Friday websites? That would be our friends at Walmart, Best Buy, and Target - the latter of which more than doubled its downstream traffic from last year:
Details for Cyber Monday - traditionally the online retailer's biggest day during the holiday season - will be available shortly.