Akamai predicted in September 2018 that mobile shopping would continue its growth this holiday shopping season. That prediction held true as we saw mobile devices  increase its share of online shopping traffic volume to 57.55% and 35.91% for desktop. Compared to Black Friday 2017 (24 Nov), mobile increased by 12% while desktop decreased by 8%.

One report stated that Black Friday drove half a million new users to the top shopping apps.

Black Friday:

Date

Desktop

Mobile

23 Nov 2018

35.91%

57.55%

24 Nov 2017

39.07%

51.19%

Difference

-8%

12%

Cyber Monday:

For Cyber Monday, the mobile dominance trend continued. Compared to Cyber Monday 2017, mobile device usage increased by 17%, while desktop decreased by 10%. This is the first time in Akamai history that mobile has eclipsed desktop in device usage on Cyber Monday, based on session traffic we measure. Due to less RUM signals provided by mobile apps to the retailer, the customer experience must be flawless in order to capture conversions and revenues from mobile shoppers. This applies regardless if the consumer is accessing the site from a mobile browser or the retailer’s mobile application.

Date

Desktop

Mobile

26 Nov 2018

43.46%

50.23%

27 Nov 2017

48.07%

43.06%

Difference

-10%

17%

This falls in line with other retail industry predictions as well. For example, the CEO of Macy’s was quoted as predicting they’ll see US $1B in sales over their mobile app by the end of 2018.

Additionally, AppAnnie (a leading provider of app market data) predicted that mobile apps would see their biggest days yet on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Our data certainly supports this mobile growth.

We see no signs of mobile online sales dropping off through the remainder of the holiday season; it will continue its growth at the expense of desktop.

Baseline:

Black Friday:

We calculated a baseline rate for the period of 4 Nov to 10 Nov; comparing Black Friday 2018 to the baseline:

The desktop drop-off was more dramatic, while mobile increased a significant amount, again underscoring the growth of mobile in online shopping.

Date

Desktop

Mobile

23 Nov 2018

35.91%

57.55%

Baseline

41.59%

50.74%

Difference

-14%

13%

Cyber Monday:

Interestingly, Cyber Monday did not see quite as dramatic of a decline in desktop usage compared to Black Friday, and mobile actually declined slightly. Cyber Monday is not a recognized holiday, so most users were likely in the office as opposed to couch surfing, shopping or traveling where they would be more inclined to use a mobile device. Online traffic increased substantially for the U.S., but not quite as dramatically for other key countries as compared to the baseline.

Date

Desktop

Mobile

26 Nov 2018

43.46%

50.23%

Baseline

41.59%

50.74%

Difference

4%

-1%

Mobile OS

Black Friday:

Android’s portion of online shopping jumped to a significant 21% compared to 2017, while iOS only increased 1%. Overall, however, iOS usage was nearly double that of Android (42% vs. 18%) which surprised us since globally, Android market share is approximately four times that of iOS. Again, comparing Black Friday 2018 with the baseline (4 Nov to 10 Nov), we saw iOS increase its share by more than twice that of Android (12% vs. 5%).

Date

Android

iOS

23 Nov 2018

21.68%

42.38%

24 Nov 2017

17.97%

42.07%

Difference

21%

1%

Cyber Monday:

On Cyber Monday, both mobile OS platforms were lower, as a result of mobile being a smaller portion of the devices in use. Overall, however, there was an increase over Cyber Monday 2017, continuing to reflect the growth of mobile devices in online shopping.

Date

Android

iOS

26 Nov 2018

18.03%

38.48%

27 Nov 2017

14.23%

37.13%

Difference

27%

4%

Baseline:

Black Friday:

Date

Android

iOS

23 Nov 2018

21.68%

42.38%

Baseline

20.67%

37.70%

Difference

5%%

12%

Cyber Monday:

Reflecting the lower overall traffic on Monday, the variance from the baseline (4 Nov to 10 Nov) was lower than on Black Friday.

Date

Android

iOS

26 Nov 2018

18.03%

38.48%

Baseline

20.67%

37.70%

Difference

-13%

2%

Conversion Rates

Black Friday:

Examining mobile OS first, we see that iOS had a very slim lead in conversion rates over Android, about comparable to its lead in 2017. Both OS conversion rates were down compared to 2017, however which was surprising given the increase of mobile devices being used for online shopping. A look at 2017 put mobile conversion rate at an average of 1.3% and 7.3% on desktops for some of the larger ecommerce sites (excluding Amazon which is higher) which indicates that mobile is tracking higher, while desktop is a bit lower – again, reasonable due to the growth in mobile.

Mobile OS:

Date

Android

iOS

23 Nov 2018

2.49%

2.70%

24 Nov 2017

2.75%

2.97%

Difference

-9.45%

-9.09%

Cyber Monday:

Cyber Monday saw a different story from Black Friday, with iOS showing a healthy increase in conversion rate over 2017 -- four times an increase compared to Android on Cyber Monday 2018 over 2017. iOS also increased substantially from 2017, which could be a factor of more iOS devices in use by mobile shoppers.

Date

Android

iOS

26 Nov 2018

2.84%

3.44%

27 Nov 2017

2.75%

3.06%

Difference

3%

12%

Mobile OS Baseline:

Black Friday:

Compared to the baseline (4 Nov to 10 Nov), both OS conversion rates increased, with Android having a small lead over iOS.

Date

Android

iOS

23 Nov 2018

2.49%

2.70%

Baseline

1.40%

1.65%

Difference

77.86%

63.64%

Cyber Monday:

Cyber Monday saw a much larger conversion rate increase over the baseline than on Black Friday. This could be from shoppers assessing deals from different retailers over the five day period and finally deciding to make their purchase on Monday.

Date

Android

iOS

26 Nov 2018

2.84%

3.44%

Baseline

1.40%

1.65%

Difference

103%

108%

Devices:

Black Friday:

When we examine devices, desktop has a significant advantage over mobile; however, desktop saw a small decrease in conversion rate compared to 2017. This is contrast to mobile which increased its conversion rate by 11%, again an indicator of mobile’s increasing use at desktop’s expense.

Date

Desktop

Mobile

23 Nov 2018

5.12%

2.72%

24 Nov 2017

5.41%

2.46%

Difference

-5.36%

10.57%

Cyber Monday:

Desktop maintained its advantage over mobile on Cyber Monday, but its conversion rate actually declined slightly while mobile’s increased significantly. Once again, the higher usage of mobile devices for online shopping can explain this.

Date

Desktop

Mobile

26 Nov 2018

5.41%

2.97%

27 Nov 2017

5.48%

2.39%

Difference

-1%

24%

Device Baseline:

Black Friday:

The baseline (4 Nov to 10 Nov) tells a slightly different story as desktop doubled its conversion rate; while not quite double, the mobile conversion rate also increased by a healthy 74%. A possible explanation is that those shoppers who were shopping via desktop preferred to remain on the desktop device to complete their purchase instead of journeying out to the stores.

Date

Desktop

Mobile

23 Nov 2018

5.12%

2.72%

Baseline

2.45%

1.56%

Difference

108.98%

74.36%

Cyber Monday:

As with the OS, the higher conversion rates on Cyber Monday vs. Black Friday could be attributed to shoppers being in a better position to make their purchase because they were aware of all the specials and decided execute before they expired.

Date

Desktop

Mobile

26 Nov 2018

5.41%

2.97%

Baseline

2.45%

1.56%

Difference

121%

90%

Global Traffic

Black Friday:

No surprise, Black Friday saw a significant spike in global traffic with a drop-off over the weekend. We used the same baseline (4 Nov to 10 Nov) and include representative countries from around the world.

The U.S. and Canada saw significant surges in user traffic of more than 100%. However, as proof that Black Friday is becoming a global phenomenon outside of the U.S., France, Germany, Spain and Italy also saw major traffic increases, in most cases, more than the U.S. For example, user traffic in Italy increased by nearly 200% over the baseline.

Asian countries saw much lesser increases, which stands to reason as Singles’ Day was less than two weeks before. But Brazil is another proof point that Black Friday is going global in the southern hemisphere, as its traffic increase was nearly 100%.

Country

23 Nov

Baseline

Difference

U.S.

51,631,487

22,380,854

130.69%

Canada

1,994,083

867,036

129.99%

UK

4,445,824

2,351,862

89.03%

France

2,463,665

951,556

158.91%

Germany

1,992,895

861,609

131.30%

Spain

4,005,105

1,397,434

186.60%

Italy

1,519,694

514,596

195.32%

Australia

396,461

208,774

89.90%

China

794,688

698,624

13.75%

Japan

548,849

387,116

41.78%

S. Korea

204,525

148,854

37.40%

Brazil

119,912

60,546

98.05%

Cyber Monday:

On Cyber Monday, the U.S. saw a larger increase in traffic against the baseline than Black Friday; while the other countries (with the exception of China) also increased, it was at a much smaller level than Black Friday. Both holidays are U.S. ‘inventions’ but Cyber Monday has not spread at the same scope and scale of Black Friday.

Country

26 Nov

Baseline

Difference

U.S.

54,487,257

22,380,854

143.45%

Canada

1,541,493

867,036

77.79%

UK

3,071,186

2,351,862

30.59%

France

1,313,742

951,556

38.06%

Germany

1,061,811

861,609

23.24%

Spain

2,013,528

1,397,434

44.09%

Italy

780,169

514,596

51.61%

Australia

279,560

208,774

33.91%

China

552,434

698,624

-20.93%

Japan

420,369

387,116

8.59%

S. Korea

203,188

148,854

36.50%

Brazil

90,800

60,546

49.97%

Cyber Monday vs. Black Friday:

Another interesting statistic is to calculate the traffic delta between Cyber Monday and Black Friday. Here, the U.S. is the only country to see a traffic increase, which is consistent with the baseline differential above that saw the other countries with much smaller increases over the baseline (excluding China).

Country

Difference

U.S.

5.53%

Canada

-22.70%

UK

-30.92%

France

-46.68%

Germany

-46.72%

Spain

-49.73%

Italy

-48.66%

Australia

-29.49%

China

-30.48%

Japan

-23.41%

S. Korea

-0.65%

Brazil

-24.28%

Security

Web Application Attack Detail:

Black Friday:

Hardly surprising, hackers around the world seeking to take advantage of the high volume of online activity also increased their activity on Black Friday. Akamai measured 33 million credential abuse/stuffing attacks. Compared to Singles’ Day (129 million credential abuse/stuffing attacks), it’s easy to see the dramatic increase in nefarious activity.

Attack Type

Number

SQL Injection

7 million

Command Injection

59 thousand

Cross-site scripting

49 thousand

PHP injection

154 thousand

Remote file inclusion

149 thousand

Cyber Monday:

The attack numbers were down on Cyber Monday; since overall traffic declined from Black Friday to Cyber Monday this is entirely reasonable to see. It doesn’t diminish the need to protect and secure mobile applications and websites, however. As the Akamai SOTI Q4 2017 State of the Internet Report / Security details, Retail saw the largest amount of bot traffic, with 2.4 trillion requests in November. For perspective, the next highest vertical was High Tech, with 1.28 trillion requests.

Attack Type

Number

SQL Injection

3.3 million

Command Injection

7.6 thousand

Cross-site scripting

20 thousand

PHP injection

28 thousand

Remote file inclusion

6.7 thousand

Black Friday:

The U.S. was the most highly targeted country – being hit with the majority (59%) of attacks -- with Japan and the United Kingdom following. Russia was the leading source of attacks (44%), a change from Akamai's Q4 2017 State of the Internet Report / Security in which the U.S. was the source of 32% of attacks. Russia was in fifth place in the SOTI report and for Black Friday here, moved up to first; note that the report was for the entire quarter, versus a single day:

Target Country

Amount

U.S.

97.8%

United Kingdom

0.9%

Germany

0.7%

 

Source Country

Amount

Russia

44%

Ukraine

6%

India

4%

Cyber Monday:

Not much changed with regard to the target country on Cyber Monday compared to Black Friday, notwithstanding India replacing Germany as the third most targeted country.

For source country, however, the U.S. replaced Russia, but with a much smaller percentage than on Black Friday. Canada was second, perhaps reflecting the fact that Cyber Monday, although starting to be observed globally, is much less global than Black Friday. Russia did remain in the top three.

Target Country

Amount

U.S.

66%

United Kingdom

6%

India

5%

 

Source Country

Amount

U.S.

25%

Canada

8%

Russia

7.5%

The high traffic increases we saw on Black Friday comes from a number of sources: increase in mobile usage and more sustained attack traffic. But it still isn’t the biggest online day ever; that honor goes to Singles’ Day. As reported, this year’s Singles’ Day traffic and revenue blew away the records set in 2017. Even with both Black Friday ($6.22b) and Cyber Monday ($7.9b) combined ($14.12b), Singles’ Day still maintains its place at the top.

 

Source: Grayling