Report: Mobile Visits to Retailer Websites on the Rise

A new report from Cofactor found smartphone users spent more time browsing retailers' websites in October and November.

Cofactor has released new shopping data related to the holiday shopping season, and specifically Black Friday. Rather than Black Friday being a single day, the report found retailers have expanded Black Friday into a larger ‘season,’ which begins as early as October.

Cofactor measured shopping data from top retailers like Target, Macy’s, Toys R Us and others from October through November, and found the larger number of deals, spread over a longer period of time, may have resulted in less consumer interest by the time Black Friday actually arrived.

For October 2015, Cofactor found a seven percent growth in the number of available deals, and a six percent increase in visits on leading retailers’ websites, compared to October 2014. While this increase in deals resulted in increased traffic, it may have also caused ‘consumer fatigue’ by November. Specifically, Cofactor found website traffic decreased 16 percent in visits on leading retailers’ websites in November 2015, compared to last November.

Cofactor October November 2015 Web Traffic

On Thanksgiving day, website traffic was down 33 percent over last Thanksgiving, and on the morning of Black Friday (through 8 a.m. central time), website traffic was down 34 percent compared to last year. Overall traffic for October and November combined was found to be down nine percent over 2014.

While overall website traffic was down for the year, Cofactor found traffic to retail sites via smartphones increased in both months. Specifically, in October 2015, there was a 39 percent increase in mobile phone visits, and a three percent decrease in tablet visits to retailers’ websites, when compared to October 2014.

In November, there was a six percent increase in smartphone visits, and a 26 percent decrease in tablet visits year-over-year to retailer websites. Combined, the two months saw an overall increase in mobile phone visits to retailers’ websites of 17 percent over last year, and a decrease in tablet visits of 18 percent compared to 2014.

Cofactor October November 2015 Mobile Traffic

Even so, Cofactor found less users searched for deals on their mobile devices on Thanksgiving day. To be specific, there was a 15 percent decrease in smartphone visits, and a 48 percent decrease in tablet visits to retailer websites on Thanksgiving, when compared to last year. According to Cofactor, this means over 210,000 less people visited retailers’ websites on smartphones, and over 224,000 less people visited retailers websites on tablets on Thanksgiving day than last year.

Readers: Did you search for deals on Thanksgiving or Black Friday via your phone or tablet?

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