Has the essence of Black Friday been lost in the US? 5:18
(CNN) -- Whether they were crammed into brick-and-mortar stores or moving between tabs and virtual carts, holiday shoppers enthusiastically participated in this year's Black Friday.
Retail sales, both in-store and online, increased year-over-year without accounting for inflation, according to Mastercard's SpendingPulse report, which notes that the apparel, jewelry and restaurant categories saw sizable increases. In-store sales were up just over 1%, while e-commerce led the way with an 8.5% increase.
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However, Sensormatic Solutions, which tracks shopper traffic in brick-and-mortar stores, found that Black Friday visits were up 4.6% from 2022. This is a turnaround for retailers, the company said, as in-person traffic is down an average of 2.4% this year.
"Although we anticipate an increase, in-store shopper traffic exceeded our expectations," Grant Gustafson, head of retail consulting and analytics at Sensormatic, said in a statement. "Consumers are once again enjoying shopping in physical stores and seeing it as an experience to share with loved ones. It's a testament to the hard work retailers have done to streamline travel and deliver satisfying experiences."
Adobe Analytics, which tracks online shopping in the U.S., reported a record $9.800 billion in Black Friday sales, up 7.5% from 2022, driven by increased demand for electronics such as TVs, smartwatches and audio equipment.
Most shoppers browsed and shopped through their phones, with mobile shopping accounting for $5.300 billion in sales. Adobe predicts that purchases made via smartphones this holiday season will surpass those made from desktop computers for the first time.
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Online shoppers also turned heavily to "buy now, pay later" installment plans, which allow consumers to split their entire shopping basket into four payments, typically several weeks apart. While some "buy now, pay later" lenders charge interest or late fees, these mini-loans can help stretch your holiday budget on major purchases or big-spending days. Last week, 72% more shoppers used "buy now, pay later" plans compared to the previous week, according to Adobe.
E-commerce platform Shopify also saw record sales, totaling more than $4 billion worldwide, up 000% from 22. According to the company, the average cart price for U.S. consumers was $2022, and the best-selling categories were personal care, clothing, and kitchenware.
With Christmas just a few weeks away, holiday shopping is intensifying and analysts expect intense activity for retailers in the coming weeks. Adobe forecasts Cyber Monday to be the biggest business event of the year, with record sales of $12 billion, up more than 000% from 6.
Sensormatic predicts that eight of the busiest in-person shopping days of the season will be in December and, combined with Black Friday weekend, are expected to account for 40% of all holiday foot traffic this year.
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