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Analysis of Retail Visits on Black Friday

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Analysis of Retail Visits on Black Friday

Black Friday was just a few weeks ago, but having data on it can reveal trends for next year's crazed shopping day. This article reflects traffic at retail locations across the US on Black Friday 2017.

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Over the course of the holiday shopping season, Reveal Mobile will measure aggregate foot traffic at retail locations across the United States. As a preview to the report that we'll share in January, we're presenting here the first round of data analysis. The charts below reflect foot traffic at retail locations across the United States on Friday, November 24th, 2017, AKA Black Friday.

Starting at the top, we see that only a small portion of the shopping public ventures out during the wee hours of the morning, with just 2.2% of all shopping traffic on Black Friday occurring at 6 AM.

The bulk of shopping takes place during the lunch and afternoon hours:

  • Morning: 6 AM - 11 AM, 21.9%
  • Lunch: 11 AM - 2 PM, 31.9%
  • Afternoon: 2 PM - 6 PM, 29.9%
  • Evening: 6 PM - closing, 16.3%

One observation that surprised us is the substantial in-store traffic that the two big home improvement stores, Lowes and Home Depot, saw during Black Friday. They also ran aggressive promotions on high priced, in-demand products, just as much as the electronic stores and big-box retailers — and consumers responded.

The chart below reflects that for all retail foot traffic on Black Friday, Home Depot saw 5.1% of those store visits. Many shoppers were also visiting Verizon Wireless and Sprint, perhaps hunting for new phones.

When we look at how each of the top seven locations fared throughout the day, we see big surges at the home improvement stores in the morning, with traffic tapering off as the day progresses.

When we look at the top seven locations as a group, they initially garnered over 20% of all retail foot traffic that we measured, waning to 13.5% as the day progressed.

What's interesting here is that the shopping trends at the top seven skew heavily towards the Black Friday early morning shopper, where they see large audiences showing up for the store opening. This is in contrast to the overall trend in retail visits for the day, which peaked during the lunch and afternoon hours, not the morning hours.

The final data to share is the number of locations that retail shoppers visited on Black Friday. Most only preferred to visit a single location (45.9%), but a sizable percentage (13.5%) did visit five or more locations.

The data used in this study is sourced from opted-in location-sharing mobile devices. It contains no personally identifiable information and is aggregated into anonymized audience segments such as "Walmart shoppers" and "Home Depot shoppers." Reveal Mobile's privacy-compliant approach has earned the company membership in the Network Advertising Initiative, the leading self-regulatory association dedicated to responsible data collection and its use in digital advertising.

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big data ,data analytics ,black friday ,data visualization

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