It’s beginning to look a lot like a record Amazon Christmas, if the start of the holiday shopping season is any indication.
On Tuesday, Amazon reported that the five days from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday broke previous sales records for the retailer, with Monday itself now the single biggest shopping day in Amazon’s history based on the total number of products ordered worldwide. Across the five days, the company said customers in the U.S. purchased millions more products than during the same period last year.
Breaking records at the start of official holiday shopping is nothing new for Amazon. It did so last year, too, with an emphasis then on its devices.
“Black Friday and Cyber Monday continue to break records on Amazon year over year, which tells us that customers love shopping for deals to kick off the holiday shopping season,” said Jeff Wilke, Amazon’s CEO worldwide consumer, in a statement about the 2018 results.
The company touted the record with a number of numbers:
- “Millions” of Amazon devices were sold worldwide over the holiday weekend, marking a new record, with the Echo Dot the No. 1 selling product from any manufacturer in any category;
- Best-selling products across all Amazon.com categories included not only the Echo Dot, but Amazon devices Fire TV Stick 4K with Alexa Voice Remote, and Fire 7 tablet with Alexa;
- Fire TV remained the No. 1 streaming media player family in the U.S., U.K. Germany, and Japan, across all retailers;
- More than 18 million toys and 13 million fashion items were ordered, worldwide, on Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined; and,
- Overall, Amazon.com customers ordered more than 180 million items over the five days.
Amazon also said sales by small and medium-sized businesses worldwide through its site grew more than 20 percent on Black Friday, year-over-year.
The company provided a few illustrative snippets, such as that Christmas lights were a bestseller on Prime Now, and that home security businesses Ring and Blink — both Amazon subsidiaries — more than doubled their sales on Amazon this year compared to the same period last year.
Amazon gave some of the credit for its appeal at the start of the shopping season to its limited-time policy of free holiday delivery with no minimum purchase for “hundreds of millions of items,” even for customers who are not Amazon Prime members.
The record-breaking Amazon five-day stretch comes against a backdrop of a strong online holiday shopping start generally. Adobe Analytics estimates Cyber Monday broke online records with at least $7.9 billion in sales in the U.S., which Adobe said made it the single largest online shopping day in U.S. history.
“Sales coming from smartphones hit an all-time high of $2 billion,” said John Copeland, Adobe’s head of marketing and customer insights in a statement, “and we saw a significant spike in the Buy Online, Pickup In-Store trend.”
Adobe said the 2018 Cyber Monday sales represented a 19.3 percent increase year-over-year, and both Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday also saw significant increases. The company added that the Saturday and Sunday after Thanksgiving set a new record as the biggest online shopping weekend in the U.S., at $6.4 billion, growing faster than either Black Friday or Cyber Monday.