Raise Your Hand if You Selected 30 Year Olds in Alabama as Your Prime Target for Black Friday

January 20, 2016
By Ken Meiser

In our last blog post, we addressed some interesting trends we observed over this past Black Friday shopping weekend. Based on an increase in online transactions and a decrease in new account enrollments1,, consumers appear to be changing their shopping behaviors to complete more purchases online rather than in-person. What else can we learn about consumer behaviors based on Black Friday data? Application volumes in the ID Network pointed to an interesting trend driven by consumer age and geography.

By looking at the application volume based on the age of the applicant, we found that the 2015 Black Friday shopping weekend was most popular with consumers between the ages of 20-40 and this mirrors the results from 2014.

Black Friday 14 vs. 15

We also compared this year’s new credit account application activity on Black Friday to an October 2015 weekend, which indicated that millennials made up a slightly smaller portion of the Black Friday shopping population compared to the shopping population on an average weekend. The opposite is true for generation X who make up a larger portion of the shopping population on Black Friday than on an average weekend.

Oct vs. Black Friday 15 - New Credit Account Applicants

How do retail credit applications break out geographically? In looking at application volume from the 2015 Black Friday shopping weekend we found that this weekend is most popular in the Southeast, which was consistent with the trends we saw in 2014.

Application Popularity During Thanksgiving 15

We also compared the Black Friday weekend to a standard shopping weekend in October 2015. The states with the greatest increase in application volume over the two weekends were Washington, Rhode Island, Minnesota and Arkansas and the states with the greatest decrease in applications were Idaho, Montana, Nebraska and New Hampshire.

State from Oct vs Nov 15

So what should retailers do with this insight? As businesses are planning for Black Friday next year, it may be worth focusing their marketing efforts on specific demographic populations and geographic regions to drive new account openings. Conversely, mapping 2015 marketing efforts with these results may yield another metric related to enhanced spend capability and stickiness. With the growth in online transactions, retailers should also consider ways to offer a seamless digital account opening experience for the mobile-centric consumer.

If you missed our past posts on Black Friday trends, check them out below:


Ken Meiser is the Vice President of Identity Solutions at ID Analytics.


1 http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/28/business/black-friday-shopping-shifts-online-as-stores-see-less-foot-traffic.html?_r=0