Salesforce Research Reveals Shoppers Go Online Early, Go Mobile and Go Social This Holiday Season

Thanksgiving Day e-commerce revenue up 18 percent, Black Friday up 13 percent and Cyber Monday e-commerce revenue up 16 percent

Mobile devices drove 66 percent of all digital traffic and 49 percent of all orders across Cyber Week

Facebook and Instagram drove 94 percent of all social traffic to retail sites

SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 28, 2018 Salesforce [NYSE: CRM], the global leader in CRM, today released new research revealing key holiday shopping season trends. Salesforce combined insights on the activities of hundreds of millions of global shoppers across more than 30 countries powered by Commerce Cloud; billions of consumer engagements powered by Marketing Cloud; millions of customer service cases viewed in Service Cloud; and data from its “Shopper-First Retailing” report to give retailers the intelligence they need to drive their businesses forward.

Top Salesforce 2018 Holiday Shopping Insights

  • Discounts started early and surged late: This year, discount rates began to tick up on the Wednesday prior to Thanksgiving, stayed elevated throughout the weekend, and ended with a bang on Cyber Monday. Cyber Monday saw a record 31 percent average discount rate. Marketers enticed shoppers with SMS and email notifications early in the week, up 159 percent and 26 percent year-over-year (YoY) respectively on Thanksgiving Day compared to a 69 percent increase in SMS notifications and 23 percent increase in email sends on Cyber Monday. Cyber Monday saw 84 percent of orders ship for free, impacting average order value (AOV), as shoppers did not have to to add additional items to their carts to avoid shipping costs.
  • The majority of shoppers browsed and bought on mobile: More shoppers than ever started their shopping on a phone, with mobile traffic hovering around 70 percent for the majority of the week. And more shoppers bought on their phones this year than any other device, with mobile order share the highest on Thanksgiving Day at 54 percent, compared to 49 percent on Black Friday and 45 percent on Cyber Monday.
  • Shoppers looked to digital for service: Salesforce data shows that, overall, customer service agents viewed 10 percent more service cases this Cyber Monday compared to last. However, shoppers weren’t just picking up the phone. Calls to customer service centers saw a slight year-over-year decline, as consumers shift the way they engage with customer service by turning to digital channels like social, messaging and chat.
  • Facebook and Instagram carried social shopping traffic; PlayStation, Apple, and Amazon led social buzz: Facebook and Instagram drove 94 percent of all social traffic to retail sites, up slightly from 92 percent in 2017. As Cyber Week deals wound down, shoppers talked about gadgets, big retailers and – in a crafty surprise – Etsy, the online artisan marketplace. The five most-talked-about products during Cyber Week were: Sony PlayStation, Apple iPhone, Amazon Echo, Apple iPad and Amazon Kindle. The five most-talked-about retailers during Cyber Week were: Amazon, Walmart, Etsy, eBay and Best Buy.

Salesforce Powers the Holiday Season

Salesforce delivers massive scale in business to consumer (B2C) CRM. Here’s how Salesforce helped retailers power personalized commerce, marketing and customer service throughout Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Cyber Week:

  • Commerce Cloud customers saw 16 percent digital revenue growth on Cyber Monday and 13 percent digital revenue growth on Black Friday. Mobile order share peaked on Thanksgiving day, accounting for 54 percent of all orders. From Thanksgiving Thursday through Cyber Monday, Commerce Cloud powered 20.1 million digital orders, up 34 percent year-over-year.
  • Marketing Cloud sent over 3.6 billion emails, mobile SMS and push notifications on Black Friday, nearly 4.2 billion on Cyber Monday and more than 21 billion throughout Cyber Week.
  • Service Cloud agents viewed more than 68 million customer service cases and received more than 21 million customer service calls on Black Friday, up 21 percent YoY. This increased to 108 million customer service cases viewed and more than 44 million customer service calls received on Cyber Monday, topping out with more than 497 million service cases viewed and 182 million calls received during Cyber Week.

Comments on the News

  • “Consumers went online early, went mobile and went social this Cyber Week, driving healthy digital growth for retailers,” said Rob Garf, VP, Industry Strategy for Retail, Salesforce. “This holiday season, shoppers responded to retailer innovation in mobile, payments and social that are enabling seamless and personalized consumer experiences -- from product discovery to purchase.”

Additional Resources:

2018 Salesforce Holiday Insights and Predictions Methodology

Salesforce combined data-based insights on the activity of hundreds of millions of global shoppers across more than 30 countries powered by Commerce Cloud, billions of consumer engagements and millions of public social media conversations through Marketing Cloud and customer service data from 200 million service cases powered by Service Cloud. This is in addition to survey data from more than 6,000 consumers across six countries in Salesforce’s “Shopper-First Retailing” report with research partner Publicis.Sapient.


About Salesforce

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