Black Friday 2020: Need to know stats

2020 has been a year of uncertainty and Black Friday proved to be the same.

As we ramped up for the busiest sales day of the year, there were a lot of lingering questions about what it was going to look like and how shoppers were going to behave. Now that it’s over, it’s time to take a closer look at what happened, how retailers performed, and what we can take away for next year.  

With countries, cities, and towns around the world in various states of lockdown, the global pandemic left a lot of us wondering how the Black Friday weekend was going to pan out. The closure of physical stores and the demand for access to shopping online meant brands had to be ready for increased website traffic.  

At the same time, economic uncertainty had a lot of marketers worried how their marketing efforts would be received by the public.  

We’ve pulled key data insights for dotdigital’s platform to give you exclusive insight into retailers’ performance over the Black Friday weekend. 

Email sends increased by 16% 

This year, over 177 million emails were sent using the dotdigital platform. That’s an increase of around 16%, up from 152 million sent last year.  

This is a clear indication that competition is rife in the world of ecommerce. Consumer inboxes are busier than ever with retailers trying to make up for revenue lost as a result of uncertainty caused by the pandemic. 

While an increase of 16% may not seem like a lot, that’s over 20 million more emails landing in customers’ inboxes. With customers accessing online stores a lot more, brands have to work harder to make their email marketing stand out. 

Email marketing generated over $70 million in revenue 

Over the course of the 2020 Black Friday weekend over 500,000 orders were placed through our platform, generating over $70 million in revenue.  

The average order placed generated $140 in revenue. That’s an increase of over 64% from last year.  

Clearly there’s still an appetite for shopping. Despite the uncertainty of the year, shoppers are still spending money. By syncing your ecommerce platform with your marketing automation platform, you can clearly see the impact email marketing has on your profits.  

Abandoned cart emails increased by 46% 

The number of abandoned cart emails sent increased from 79,068 to 115,366 this year. That’s an increase of 46%. Brands were able to recover an average of 20% of revenue by incorporating cart abandonment campaigns into their email marketing strategy.  

It’s great to see adoption improving for this marketing automation program. Abandoned cart emails are massive revenue generators which should make them an essential part of your marketing strategy. A timely prompt triggered when a customer leaves your site is all it takes to push customers to convert on your site.  

Brands sent 5.7 million SMS 

The number of SMS sent over the Black Friday weekend increased by 26% showing that adoption rates for the marketing channel continues to increase.  

SMS is the perfect channel to engage shoppers wherever they are. With a 95% read rate within 5 minutes, SMS can be used to drive shoppers to your website. As it’s still a growing channel, it’s easy for brands to make an impact using this channel as text message inboxes are considerably less cluttered than the email inbox.  

Behind the numbers 

It’s clear marketers are getting more comfortable using the marketing automation platform at their fingertips.  

The more ecommerce marketers sync their various data systems and automation platforms, the more advanced the tactics they can adopt. We’re starting to see the evidence of this in the strategy ecommerce brands embraced for the Black Friday weekend.  

Abandoned cart emails were among our tops tips for maximizing sales this sale season. Over 100,000 cart abandonment emails were triggered proving the tactic is growing in popularity. 

It’s also great to see the number of SMS being sent on the rise. This shows that brands are seeking new ways to improve the customer experience by engaging them on new channels.  

After the unpredictability of the past year, it’s hard to say with any degree of certainty what Black Friday and Cyber Monday are going to look like next year. 2020 may have changed the way we shop forever or we could be queueing to get into shops at 6am next year.  

One thing we do know is that 2020 has forced ecommerce marketers to try new tactics. As new automation programs recover lost revenue and customers embrace new channels to connect with their favorite brands, we know that there will be no going back. Ecommerce marketers have seen the benefits and reaped the rewards of these advanced marketing tactics.  

As tech continues to develop in anticipation of new marketing needs, we hope this Black Friday weekend has shown marketers the benefit of trying something new during this busy period.  

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