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Black Friday broke new records with consumer spend hitting $52 billion

During Black Friday in the US, traffic and spending were up both online and in-stores, reaching historic highs, according to a National Retail Federation survey conducted by BIGresearch over the weekend. Some 86.3 million shoppers were recorded that day alone.

According to the survey, a record 226 million shoppers visited stores and websites over Black Friday weekend, up from 212 million last year. The average holiday shopper spent $398.62 this weekend, up from $365.34 last year. Total spending reached an estimated $52.4 billion. Additionally, shoppers also checked out retailers’ deals online, spending an average of $150.53 on the web – 37.8% of their total weekend spending.

Lured by promotions on everything from winter apparel to tablet devices, shoppers definitely stocked up on discretionary gifts this year. More than half (51.4%) bought clothing and clothing accessories, and gift buyers were also drawn to promotions on electronics and computer-related accessories over the weekend. Nearly four in 10 (39.4%) bought electronic items, up from 36.7% last year.

The most popular shopping destinations once again were at department stores (48.7%) and discounters (37.5%). Electronics stores themselves attracted 30.8% of consumers

For the first time, NRF asked how shoppers would use their smartphones and tablets over the weekend as well. More than one-quarter (25.7%) of Americans with tablet devices said they did or will purchase items with their devices, and 37.4 percent will or have researched products and compared prices with their tablets. Overall, more than half (57.1%) said they have or will use their tablet devices to shop for gifts this weekend.

The survey, conducted 24-26 November by BIGresearch for NRF, polled 3,826 consumers and has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.6%.

Story filed 28.11.11

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