Hitwise, a division of Connexity, is a provider of online consumer insights and analytical services measuring online behavior daily to help marketers understand and reach consumers across channels and media in a connected device ecosystem. The data they have developed about online habits in Q4 2015 shows a huge increase in online visits this holiday season.
Billions and Billions…and Billions More Visits
This holiday season, Americans paid a record 11.5 billion visits to the top retail sites in the Hitwise Retail 500* in November and December which represents a 25% increase from the 9.2 billion visits that Hitwise registered during the 2014 holiday season. That equates to more than one billion visits each week with the weeks of Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday generating the greatest traffic of the season.
Notable is the fact that among the season’s top online shopping days is that Thanksgiving unseated Cyber Monday for the first time as the biggest day of the season (and the year) when consumers made 328.7 million visits to the top Hitwise Retail 500* sites. In fact, Cyber Monday fell to third place as Black Friday was the second biggest day with 328.5 million visits.
As expected, consumers continued the trend observed in 2014 of shopping online deeper into the week instead of concentrating their activities so heavily on Monday. While Mondays were still the biggest day of each week after Thanksgiving, visits on Wednesdays and even Thursdays were consistently about 95 percent of Monday levels. In fact, during most weeks of the season, there was virtually no discernible drop off in online visits after Monday. With consumers shopping online deeper into the week, marketers had greater opportunity to reach them before they head back to the stores enabling them to more seamlessly tie their online and in-store campaigns together.
Fitbit Is It!
The warm weather this year may explain in part the fact that for the first time in years Ugg was not the hottest product of the season, having ceded the title to Fitbit. Even the multiple variations of Ugg combined wouldn’t be enough to win the holiday. Rather than find excuses for Uggs’ fall, the real credit goes to the strength of Fitbit which registered more than double the share of product searches as the season’s second hottest product, Pie Face game. Furthermore, Fitbit dominates the wearable space despite the entry of Apple Watch earlier in 2015.
Other Trends In The 2015 Hot Products List
Footwear: Uggs may no longer top the list of hot products as they have in years past—perhaps due to unseasonably warm weather—but the iconic footwear still occupies two spots in the top 20 and is joined by “Converse” and “New Balance.”
Gaming consoles: Xbox One, PS4 and Wii U remain seasonal favorites despite 2015 being the third Christmas for the three top consoles.
Coffee: Keurig and Ninja Coffee Bar both made it on the top 20 list for the month of December, but competing coffee maker brands Nespresso and Tassimo have also appeared on the radar as consumers seek to simplify or potentially upgrade their morning cup of Joe.
Top Online Retailers
In December this year, over a third of all visits to the Hitwise Retail 500 were to Amazon.com, up from 26.2% in December 2014. In fact, the number of additional visits that Amazon gained in December 2015 versus 2014 was nearly double what second place Walmart received in the month. So Amazon’s growth was almost two Walmarts.
Most of the top sites posted a growth in visits year-over-year despite the fact that many actually lost share due to the astronomical growth of Amazon. For instance, Walmart gained 13.8 million additional visits this December versus a year ago while going from a 7% share overall to 6%.
*The Hitwise Retail 500 is an aggregation of the top 500 online retail sites based on number of online visits over a 30-day period
Hitwise unifies rich consumer attributes such as demographics, psychographics, purchase behaviors, purchase intent, media consumption and brand loyalty with granular digital consumption and search patterns across Web and mobile devices. Hitwise provides the largest sample of online behavior in the US, UK and Australia enabling marketers, publishers and agencies to define consumer segments in real-time and profile and analyze their behavior to size audiences, buy advertising and convert more site traffic. Hitwise operates in the U.S., UK, APAC and Brazil and has more than 900 clients across industry sectors, including retail, travel, financial services, advertising, media, technology and pharmaceuticals.