A complete look at desktop conversion rates for the 2017 holiday season reveals that for the largest holiday-focused online retailers, conversion rates peaked during the Thanksgiving weekend and dramatically dropped after Dec. 21, according to marketing analytics firm Jumpshot.
Jumpshot’s analysis is based on its review of more than 160 billion monthly clicks made by 100 million consumers globally. Jumpshot says U.S. consumers comprise a significant portion of its panel. Jumpshot tracks the clickstream of consumers to track on-site searches, product page views and online conversion points. Mobile data does not include app data.
All online retailers had a higher desktop conversion rate Nov. 28-Dec. 21 than their “pre-Black Friday average,” which is the average between Sept. 1-Thanksgiving.
While most retailers saw their desktop conversion rate peak during the Black Friday-Cyber Monday four day period, this was not the case for Amazon.com Inc. (No. 1 in the Internet Retailer 2017 Top 500) and marketplaces eBay.com Inc. (No. 4 in the 2018 Internet Retailer Online Marketplaces ranking) and Etsy Inc. (No. 13 in the Online Marketplaces).
Amazon’s desktop conversion rate high for the season was not Cyber Monday or Black Friday. On average between Nov. 28-Dec. 21, Amazon.com’s desktop conversion rate was 19.3% compared with its Black Friday desktop conversion rate of 18.3% and Cyber Monday conversion rate at 18.7%.
“This suggests that Amazon was the go-to site for last minute holiday shoppers,” says Shaun Rivera, senior analyst at Jumpshot.
For Etsy, its desktop conversion rate Nov. 28-Dec. 21 average was 7.3%, just slightly higher compared with 7.2% on average for Black Friday-Cyber Monday average.
The same phenomenon was true for eBay.com, as its average conversion rate Nov. 28-Dec. 21 was 9.8%, higher than both Black Friday (8.9%) and Cyber Monday (9.6%). In fact, eBay’s conversion rate stayed between 8.8%-9.9% from its pre-Black Friday average through Jan. 15.
Out of the analyzed group of retailers, Amazon.com and Target.com were the online retailers that had a higher desktop conversion rate in January (on average Jan. 1-15) than their pre-Black Friday average. Amazon’s desktop conversion in the first half of January was 16.3% compared with 16.0% before Black Friday, and Target’s was 3.3% in January compared with 2.9%
The holiday season is the reason why 72.8% of retailers say their conversion rate is highest in the fourth quarter, according to an Internet Retailer exclusive survey of 42 merchants in October-December 2017.
On average, these online retailers reported a 2.96% conversion rate for 2017. For desktops, the average conversion rate was 3.68%.
In an ongoing effort to understand the most vital business strategies of merchants that sell online, Internet Retailer is taking a deep dive on conversion rate. Help us improve our estimates and category benchmarks by answering the two questions below.