Although Black Friday has traditionally marked the start of the holiday shopping season, many retailers start their ‘Black Friday’ sales earlier each year to extend the holiday shopping season.1 Despite some holiday discounts starting early, according to the National Retail Federation, 154 million consumers shopped in stores and online, approximately 3 million more than in 2015.2
For credit issuers in 2016, Black Friday was once again a bonanza. On Black Friday weekend 2016, ID Analytics saw a 2.7x increase in application volumes compared to a normal shopping weekend in October of the same year, indicating that shoppers are still focused on Thanksgiving weekend as the official kickoff of the shopping season. Retailers realized the biggest benefit with application volumes 3.8x higher than normal.3
While Black Friday saw a dramatic 173 percent increase in application volumes across the wireless, bankcard, retail card, and marketplace loan industries, the Cyber Monday increase was slightly lower at 62 percent. 3
- Generational Differences – ID Analytics also found that there were stark differences in application volume by generation. Applications submitted by millennial consumers increased by 2.6x, Generation X by 3.1x, baby boomers by 2.7x, and the silent generation 1.7x. The millennial generation showed the greatest increase in credit card applications on Black Friday while Generation X saw the biggest increase in wireless and retail applications.
- Wireless is a key driver – Wireless applications were twice as high on Black Friday compared to a similar Friday in October (10/21), with Generation X showing the greatest rise in applications.
Ken Meiser is the Vice President of Identity Solutions at ID Analytics.
1. Black Friday sales extending to the entire month of November. 7 News Boston. (7 November 2016) http://whdh.com/news/news-team/black-friday-sales-extending-to-the-entire-month-of-november/
2. Smith, Ana Serafin. Retailers Made Black Friday Irresistible for Consumers with Great Deals, Online and In-Store. National Retail Federation (27 November 2016) https://nrf.com/media/press-releases/retailers-made-black-friday-irresistible-consumers-great-deals-online-and-store
3. Data based on credit and loan application information tracked by the ID Network