Whether consumers like the idea or not, Thanksgiving Day retail shopping continues to expand and the number of shoppers continues to grow. A National Retail Federation survey conducted by BIGinsight found that there were 35 million Americans in retail stores and on retail websites on Thanksgiving Day, increased from 29 million on Thanksgiving Day of 2011.
The survey showed retail traffic and spending grew through the big shopping weekend - including 89 million shoppers on Black Friday, up from 86 million in 2011. The survey said a record-setting 247 million shoppers were at stores and retail websites over the Black Friday weekend, from 226 million in 2011. The average holiday shopper spent $423 over the weekend, up from $398 over the 2011 Black Friday weekend. Total spending over the weekend was estimated at $59.1 billion.
The survey also found that 28.0% of weekend shoppers were in stores by midnight on Black Friday, from 24.4% in 2011.
Consumers online shopping over the Black Friday weekend was up this year, according to the survey, to an average $172.42 - 40.7% of their total Black Friday weekend spending, up from 37.8% in 2011.
In terms of online shopping, the survey found:
* 27.0% of holiday shoppers shopped online on Thanksgiving Day
* 47.5% shopped online on Black Friday
Other findings about Black Friday weekend shopping behavior:
* 79.6% of shoppers bought non-gift items
* 37.7% of gift buyers bought electronics
* 32.6% of shoppers bought gift cards, up from 23.1% in 2011
Where the shoppers shopped, according to the survey:
* 53.5% visited department stores over the weekend, up from 48.7% in 2011
* 39.4% visited discount stores
* 33.0% went to electronics stores
* 43.8% visited retailer websites, up from 35.2% in 2011
to Daily News