Tech Dec 05, 2015 06:46 AM EST

Foursquare says this year's Black Friday retail foot traffic decreased about two percent

By Staff Writer

Black Friday is the US biggest e-shopping holiday. The check-in app Foursquare is the most used app in the shopping season, as it can track when/where and how its users are shopping.

According to Venture Beat, Foursquare's data predicted that this year people prefer to sit on their couch and shop online. It also showed the rising graph of online shopping, an evidence based on the data of the check-in app.

This year's Black Friday's retail foot traffic of Foursquare and location-sharing app Swarm users, decreased about two percent.

Foursquare COO Jeff Glueck wrote in a Medium post Tuesday, "When you remove key offline stalwart categories like auto dealers and grocery stores, however, we saw -5% YoY foot traffic,"

Increased sale of one category was seen more than the others. Categories like Apparel, department stores, electronics retailers, toy stores and mobile phone stores suffered through huge decline of online traffic, as mentioned by Medium.

However, Brick & mortar categories including big box retailers, bookstores, and grocery and specialty foods stole the percentage of sales this Black Friday.

"Big box retailers keep some advantages during holiday shopping because of the breadth of merchandise and deals and the ability of consumers to touch the merchandise and drive home with it," Foursquare's Glueck said.

"In the coming few weeks of the whole holiday season this advantage will be even more true, as shipping cut-offs come into play in the final weekend," he said.

It is speculated that mobile and online commerce are stealing a large percentage of sales from other categories. But still brick & mortar local grocery stores (including specialty foods and liquor stores) will likely maintain their sale strength.  

Big box retailers advantage themselves from the holiday shopping by offering merchandise and good deals. The consumers feel the benefits from such offers, hence raising the sale graph of the retailers.  

The coming few weeks of the holiday season will bring shipping cut-offs. This is another motivating factor behind the secret of high sale rate.  

As reported by Tech Crunch, data from Foursquare revelead  that Black Friday shoppers shopped  at brick-and-mortar shops for an average of about 4.9 hours. Precisely, 2.8 stores were visited by each shopper.

The location-tracking app also determined that Best Buy JCPenney, and Macy's were labeled with the biggest increase in foot traffic on the big day. Dick's Sporting Goods and Sports Authority did not make it to top five. 

End of the year is considered as shopping season as about 25% of the spending began on Thanksgiving. Some retailers start sales early boosting their sale rate. However, according to Foursquare, last year's "Super Saturday," which is the Saturday before Christmas, was actually the busiest shopping day.

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