Walmart, Toys “R” Us Saw Biggest Facebook Gains On Black Friday, Cyber Monday

By Justin Lafferty 

As millions of people opened their wallets last weekend for Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, brands’ Facebook pages also experienced success. Walmart, which was bombarded on Facebook with criticism for opening at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving, was actually the most successful brand on the social network during the two shopping days, according to Socialbakers. Amazon, Macy’s, and Toys “R” Us also earned kudos for fan growth and engagement.

Socialbakers monitored Facebook campaigns from Nov. 16 through 27, finding that Walmart was able to attract 639,632 new fans. Toys “R” Us increased its Facebook fan base by a period-high 5.22 percent. On Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, it was Amazon, and not a brick-and-mortar store, that saw the largest Facebook fan growth, with 63,657 new fans.

In terms of overall posts during this period, Walmart was most active, with 80 stories being pushed out, followed by Amazon (59), and Kohl’s (55). On Black Friday, Walmart posted 16 times, Toys “R” Us nine times, and Best Buy and Sears seven times each.

Over the monitored period, this post from Macy’s (a photo of a Hello Kitty balloon at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade) was the most engaging, gathering more than 370,000 likes, 9,000 comments, and 23,000 shares. On Black Friday itself, the most engaging post came from Toys “R” Us, promoting a Wii U handheld gaming console.

Walmart (as well as Target) came under heavy fire on its Facebook page for opening earlier than the usual midnight Black Friday start. By cutting into Thanksgiving, Walmart’s decision spawned employee protests all across the country, leading to several acerbic comments on its Facebook page.

Socialbakers found that Walmart received the highest amount of questions (450) and total posts (3,970) on Black Friday, many of which dealt with the employee strike. Comments were both positive (supporting Walmart) or negative (supporting the Making Change initiative). Making Change, a cause supporting Walmart workers, saw its Facebook page grow by 28 percent on Black Friday. The page also hosted more than 22,000 interactions that day.

While Walmart struggled to keep up with its interactions on Black Friday, Target, Bed Bath and Beyond, Kohl’s, Best Buy, and Sears were all lauded for their response rate. Bed Bath and Beyond actually responded to all comments on Black Friday, while Target, Kohl’s, Best Buy, and Sears answered more than 65 percent of Facebook fan questions.

After the weekend passed, Walmart was again the biggest brand on Cyber Monday, when retailers all over the country offer one-day sales. Walmart increased its fan base that day by 34,734, Amazon by 32,247, and Kohl’s by 30,325. In terms of percentage, Toys “R” us was the biggest gainer, increasing its count by 0.72 percent. Ebay was the most popular that day, with a total of 91,826 fan interactions.

Readers: Did you interact with brands on Facebook during Black Friday or Cyber Monday?

Images courtesy of Socialbakers.