The graph compares the online revenue in the United States on Thanksgiving and Black Friday from 2008 to 2016. On Black Friday 2016, US online revenues amounted to 1.97 billion US dollars, up from 1.66 billion US dollars in the previous year.
The holiday season in the United States usually begins around Thanksgiving (fourth Thursday of November) and ends right after New Year’s Eve. Due to a tradition of gift-giving associated with this time of the year in the United States, as well as in many other countries, the holiday season has been for decades not only a time for celebration, but also a time for shopping deals. In recent years some outlets have been advertising special sales as early as October. One of the most important days for retailers across America is the so-called Black Friday, the day immediately after Thanksgiving, which is a bank holiday in most of the United States. According to a recent survey, 37 percent of respondents claimed to be very likely to shop on Thanksgiving or Black Friday in 2014, up from 28 percent in the previous year.
Since Black Friday shopping in bricks-and-mortar retail outlets sometimes involves waiting in line for hours or even camping outside stores, as well as having to literally fight other customers for the best deals, online holiday shopping has become increasingly popular in the past few years, with retail e-commerce sales having amounted to over 53 billion U.S. dollars during November and December 2014 in the United States. In 2014, 36 percent of surveyed Americans were planning to shop in store, while 37 percent were going to do their Thanksgiving/Black Friday shopping online. During the same weekend in 2013, an estimated 417 million U.S. dollars worth of sales were generated from iPads and over 230 additional million from iPhones and Android phones. As of 2014, the time-slot most popular among online Black Friday shoppers was actually on Thanksgiving day (in recent years also called Black/Brown/Gray Thursday by retailers and shoppers), between 6 p.m. and 11:59 pm.