Posts Tagged ‘Black Friday’

Black Friday by the Social Numbers

Black Friday SaleNumbers vary on depending on where you look, but a lot of people seem to think that Black Friday this year didn’t generate the sales numbers that retailers were looking for. In fact, a lot of outlets are claiming that Black Friday sales numbers this year went down when compared to last year.

But sales numbers aside, Black Friday was still event that people were talking about. And a lot of that talk and sharing of sales and deals was happening though social media.

We decided to take a quick look to see just how many conversation were happening about Black Friday this year using MAP, our social media monitoring and analytics software.

Looking for mentions of “Black Friday” or the “#BlackFriday” hashtag on Friday November 28th, we found over 3.5 million social mentions on just that single day. That was 17,330 blog posts, 31,221 online news articles, 51,741 forum postings and 3,426,440 tweets.

Sysomos MAP - Activity Summary for Black Friday

While shopping is sometimes seen as something women prefer to do over men, when we looked a little bit deeper into those Black Friday tweets on Nov. 28th, we actually found that men were tweeting more about it than women by just barely more at 52% vs 48%.

Sysomos MAP - Twitter Activity Summary for Black Friday

Now, if you think that 3.5 million conversations about shopping sales in a single day is a lot, you’re probably right. In fact, when we looked at the mentions of Black Friday for the week culminating on the 28th, we actually found that mentions on the day were half of all the mentions. From November 22nd through the 28th the total mentions of Black Friday across social channels was just over 7 million.

Sysomos MAP - Activity Summary for the Week of Black Friday

When we trend those numbers out across the week, we can actually see just how much the mentions of Black Friday rise until the day actually hits. Most of the week before seems to have a few mentions happening each day, but we can really see people starting to prepare and talk about Black Friday on the 27th (which is the American Thanksgiving). But then on the 28th, when Black Friday hits, the numbers just skyrocket.

Sysomos MAP - Popularity Chart for the Week of Black Friday

When we dug deeper into Twitter mentions for the whole week, we found that men and women equaled out in their shares of mentions. What’s more interesting though, is the actual number of tweets that occurred. Even if we minus the number of tweets we showed above that happened on Black Friday (3,426,440) we still have 3.3 million tweets that mentioned Black Friday leading up to the actual day. This is very different than we saw in a post that we did back in 2012 that showed only 1.1 million tweets in the two weeks leading up to Black Friday. That means talk of Black Friday has tripled in those two years.

Sysomos MAP - Twitter Activity Summary of the Week of Black Friday

Now, just to be fair, since yesterday was “Cyber Monday,” we thought it would be interesting to also compare the mentions of that to Black Friday. We were really surprised with what we found here.

Many financial publications speculated over the weekend that Black Friday sales weren’t as high this year because people were waiting buy their stuff online instead on Cyber Monday. However, when we looked at how many times “Cyber Monday” or the hashtag “#CyberMonday” was used yesterday we were very surprised. Mentions of Cyber Monday didn’t even hit the 1 million mark yesterday. There was only 7,099 blog posts, 13,065 online news articles, 10,703 forum postings and 806,668 tweets yesterday containing our key terms.

Sysomos MAP - Activity Summary for Cyber Monday

Now none of these mentions have any real effect on what sales were like, but we were surprised to see the low number of mentions of Cyber Monday yesterday.

What do you think is happening here? Are people done with the big shopping sales day? Or people just not talking about it as much through social media? Let us know what you think in the comments.

Black Friday

Of course we were going to look at Black Friday – the biggest shopping day in the United States and growing bigger in Canada.

Black Friday is this week, right after Thanksgiving and people are definitely talking about it. I took a look at the search term “Black Friday” and social activity over the last two weeks on MAP.

Black Friday Tweets

As you can see, there are 1.1 million mentions on Twitter with an average of 84,316 tweets per day and 3,515 tweets per hour.  That’s 58 tweets a minute if you want to do the math.

The gender breakdown shows that women are the ones doing most of the chatting about Black Friday shopping but what exactly are they talking about?

Black Friday BuzzGraph and WordCloud

Apart from the expected words such as “sale,” “coupon and “deals,” shoppers are being specific about where they’re going to shop. The two stores that come up in the BuzzGraph and WordCloud are Amazon and Walmart, which carries almost everything.

But what about Canada? There has been media coverage about how stores are staying open later to compete with Black Friday in the US  but is it reflected in social media? I did a search using “Black Friday” AND “Canada” and took a look at the last two weeks.

Canadian tweets about Black Friday

The answer is… not very much. There is growth day over day but not a lot of Twitter activity over the last two weeks. This is reflected overall in all social platforms.

Black Friday Social Media - Canada

Could it be because Canadians have Boxing Day sales that last an entire month? Or could it be because of one word?

Black Friday WordCloud - Canada

The word that pops up in the WordCloud is shipping. While deals can be found if you cross the border, shopping from within Canada can still cost you by time you add customs and shipping costs.

Will you be participating in Black Friday sales?


Black Friday and Social Media Buzz

Today our friends in the US are taking the day off to enjoy some time with family, friends and some turkey. While this may be a restful day for most Americans, all that will change tomorrow on the US’s biggest shopping day of the year, Black Friday. We’ve all seen the videos of people lining up the day before and some people getting trampled on Black Friday just so others can get a TV for a super cheap price. With such a big hype around the deals and savings for Black Friday I decided to check out the buzz in social media about it.

Using MAP, our social media monitoring and analytics platform, I searched the social web for mentions of Black Friday. Since the beginning of the month I was able to find 434, 497 blog posts, 37,961 online news articles, 108,209 forum posts and 701,564 tweets talking about Black Friday.

I tracked the conversations all the way back to then beginning of November and we can see that as Black Friday draws closer the talk about it continues to pick up steam.

A look at a heat map of the USA shows us that all the sates seem to be tweeting about the shopping day. California is the darkest on the map meaning the most talk about Black Friday is coming from there, followed by New York, Texas and Florida.

I then thought that diving a little bit deeper into all of this information could help show what people were going to be looking for on the Black Friday shopping trips. I started with the buzzgraph, which shows us the words being used most in conjunction with my search term, but didn’t seem to get anything here. The words that seem to be most connected are more general such as “Thanksgiving,” “cyber” (as in cyber monday) and “retail.”

I also found the same sort of results when I looked at a word cloud using the same search terms.

To delve a little bit deeper I decided to see if our entities tool could help pull out better information as it searches the content for proper nouns. Searching Twitter led to very few results, but searching through the blog and forum posts about Black Friday yielded some insights into what people will be shopping for. On blogs I was able to pull out a few items that seem to be on people’s shopping lists like HD tv’s and new cameras. As well, we can also see people talking about where to get the best deals like Best Buy and Amazon.

I then moved over to forums, because as I’ve noted in a previous blog post, forums seem to be used the most when it comes to sharing deals. In forums though, the results seem to be a bit more scattered. We can still see some products like “notebook computer” and “PS3,” but they seem to only be a minor part of the conversation. We also see places to get some of the best deals again like “WalMart,” “Best Buy” and “Amazon.” However, one thing that seems to be more apparent here than in blogs are numbers. Some of these may be product codes as it’s easier for people to search for products online using those codes, but some may also be savings codes to help people save even more money. Some of these actually look like phone numbers to me. It’s hard to say exactly what all the codes are for, but it’s quite apparent that they are there.

Then, just for good measure I decided to take a look at the other end of the upcoming weekend at what is known as Cyber Monday. Like Black Friday, Cyber Monday is known as a day to get good deals, except most of these deals are for online shopping only. Since the beginning of November I found 118,217 blog posts, 10,287 online news articles, 5,371 forum posts and 31,417 tweets about Cyber Monday.

I also pulled up the entities list for forums talking about Cyber Monday. Here we can see much more of a product orientation, with electronic and digital products being the main focus.

From what I was able to see here today, it looks like electronics are what everybody will be shopping for over this upcoming weekend. Do you plan on taking advantage of these deals? What are you looking to pick up?