Following a record-setting 2020 vacation season, the retail {industry} has been eagerly ready to see how 2021 vacation ecommerce gross sales will stack up.

A number of financial elements have contributed to the uncertainty of this yr’s vacation purchasing season. International provide chain disruptions spurred anxious consumers to purchase earlier in anticipation of out-of-stock merchandise, with analyst agency McKinsey reporting 40% of customers planning to buy sooner. Delivery service surcharges and the re-opening of bodily retail additionally posed potential threats to on-line gross sales, particularly as 43% of U.S. consumers deliberate to make purchases from bodily shops this vacation season.

Heading into the 2021 vacation season, eMarketer forecasted U.S. vacation ecommerce gross sales would climb 14.4% to $211.66 billion, with Cyber Monday anticipated to stay the top-grossing day of the season.

We now know Adobe Analytics reported the first-ever decline (-1.4%) in mixture U.S. on-line Cyber Week gross sales. Nevertheless, BigCommerce retailers achieved file gross sales quantity and outperformed this benchmark with 15% progress in Cyber Week GMV YoY — bucking the {industry} development.

As a part of our annual Cyber Week Report, we analyzed BigCommerce service provider tendencies throughout the 2021 vacation purchasing season at giant, in addition to Cyber Week (Thanksgiving by means of Cyber Monday) to find out shifts in shopper purchasing conduct and spend. 

Learn on for a full report of this season’s knowledge insights and high tendencies, and discover out the place BigCommerce retailers noticed probably the most Cyber Week success.

Excellent Platform Efficiency and Assist

BigCommerce platform efficiency and assist groups proceed to supply retailers with the reliability they should drive conversions and income in the course of the busiest purchasing season of the yr. This yr, BigCommerce noticed 100% Cyber Week platform efficiency uptime, marking the eighth consecutive yr of zero reported website downtime in the course of the peak vacation interval. BigCommerce assist groups additionally supported over 2,500 circumstances throughout the 5 day interval.

BigCommerce CEO, Brent Bellm, shares his ideas on our Cyber Week 2021 outcomes:

“After the explosive progress of ecommerce in 2020, we have been delighted to see BigCommerce retailers set new vacation gross sales information in 2021. Their above-industry gross sales outcomes profit from the efficiency and scalability of the BigCommerce platform, which achieved 100% Cyber Week uptime for the eighth-straight yr,” mentioned Brent Bellm, chief govt officer at BigCommerce. “We aspire to offer BigCommerce retailers the aggressive benefit they should outperform their competitors and thrive within the new period of ecommerce.”


BigCommerce’s vacation purchasing knowledge is predicated on a comparability of whole platform gross sales that occurred between October 1–November 30, 2020 and October 1–November 30, 2021, whereas Cyber Week knowledge is predicated on a comparability between November 26–30, 2020 and November 25–29, 2021. It represents data from 1000’s of small, mid-sized and enterprise world retailers promoting on the BigCommerce platform.

Now, let’s dive into the tendencies we’ve seen throughout the 2021 vacation purchasing season so far.

Total Vacation Ecommerce Gross sales Remained Robust

1. Earlier purchasing sparked YoY vacation progress.

The 2021 vacation purchasing season so far has marked one other yr of ecommerce progress. 

This yr’s on-line vacation purchasing season kicked off sooner than ever earlier than with retailers reminiscent of Amazon and Goal rolling out Black Friday offers starting in October

Customers certainly began their vacation purchasing earlier in an effort to get forward of anticipated out-of-stocks and delivery delays. International gross sales have been up greater than 20% YoY in the course of the month of October for BigCommerce retailers, with the week of October 17–23 displaying the most important spike in gross sales progress YoY throughout the vacation season so far.

Total, October and November GMV progress continued on the similar tempo now we have seen in current quarters, at the same time as retailers and customers handled provide chain and different disruptions.

So, what implications did this have on Cyber Week?

2. BigCommerce Cyber Week gross sales nonetheless shine YoY.

Even with {dollars} unfold throughout the sooner vacation season, Cyber Week noticed spectacular progress year-over-year (YoY) throughout the board for all key metrics: gross merchandise quantity (GMV), orders and common order worth (AOV).

BigCommerce retailers’ Cyber Week gross sales elevated +103% from 2019 to 2021. Trying completely at same-store gross sales for shops open one yr in the past, GMV was up 10%. Quite than experiencing a slowdown, BigCommerce retailers continued to develop at double-digit charges. 

Whereas October noticed 20% progress year-over-year, pre-holiday gross sales resulted in a barely decrease progress fee for Cyber Week, in step with the {industry} development we’ve seen. 

Following the fiscal challenges of 2020, common order worth (AOV) additionally elevated 10% from $144 to $159, suggesting that many customers are able to spend once more.

BigCommerce VP of International Product Advertising, Meghan Stabler, shares her ideas on the 2021 Cyber Week efficiency:

“We are thrilled to see that BigCommerce retailers skilled one more yr of constructive progress in Cyber Week gross sales, regardless of the slight drop industry-wide. Retailers have been confronted with obstacles from provide chain gridlocks and delivery surcharges to the reopening of bodily retail, and confirmed excellent resilience in what has been the most important ecommerce vacation season so far. If this yr’s vacation season is any indication, BigCommerce continues to play a number one position within the vacation purchasing season at giant.”

3. For BigCommerce retailers, Cyber Monday led in GMV.

Whereas Cyber Monday gross sales dropped 1.4% for the bigger ecommerce {industry}, BigCommerce retailers nonetheless got here out on high. Cyber Monday claimed the primary spot in GMV throughout the height cyber days for BigCommerce retailers, whereas Black Friday claimed probably the most orders.

Main retailers together with Walmart and Goal opted to shut their doorways on Thanksgiving Day this yr amid ongoing security considerations and workforce shortages. Because of this, extra Thursday gross sales shifted on-line. Thanksgiving Day emerged as an upcoming Cyber 5 contender with the most important single-day YoY GMV progress.

Clients are Procuring on Cellular

1. As cell orders keep regular, tablets lower.

Cellular orders remained sturdy this yr — accounting for 42% of all Cyber Week orders. 

The return of in-person household time and vacation busyness couldn’t even distract consumers from benefiting from offers on-the-go. Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday and Small Enterprise Saturday all noticed extra cell orders than desktop, with desktop gaining extra traction on Cyber Monday as extra customers returned to the workplace.

Notably, tablets continued their regular decline to solely signify 1.3% of Cyber Week orders. Persevering with at this fee, we will undertaking pill gross sales to fall to lower than 1% of order share in the course of the 2022 vacation season.

2. Cellular makes a mark throughout industries.

Cellular friendliness is changing into more and more necessary throughout all {industry} varieties. BigCommerce Trend and Jewellery and Sports activities and Open air retailers have been among the many stand-out industries on cell, with over half of their Black Friday on-line orders positioned on cell units. Auto retailers additionally demonstrated a considerable share of cell orders throughout all Cyber Week purchasing days.

3. Clients store extra on iPhone over Android.

With cell commerce on the rise, we determined to take a more in-depth have a look at how purchases made on smartphones divvy up. This yr, our knowledge exhibits there’s a correlation between cell units and total spend. 

Particularly, cell purchasing on iPhones accounted for 122% extra orders than Android — up 15% from final yr. Plus, orders positioned on iPhones confirmed a $14 stronger AOV of $144, in comparison with Android at $130.

Clients Shopped Throughout A number of Channels

1. Extra channels carry extra gross sales alternatives.

In 2021, BigCommerce has expanded the variety of omnichannel integrations for retailers  — that means clients have extra avenues for on-line purchasing than ever earlier than. 

BigCommerce’s acquisition of Feedonomics plus partnerships with Meta, Walmart, TikTok, Mercado Libre and extra have additionally opened up better alternatives for retailers to fulfill clients the place they’re and improve omnichannel gross sales in the course of the 2021 vacation purchasing season. 

Omnichannel commerce noticed YoY progress in GMV and orders, confirming that not solely are clients purchasing extra on-line — they’re purchasing throughout channels.

2. Amazon and Fb come out on high in Cyber Week channel gross sales.

Throughout market purchases, Amazon stays the main Cyber Week purchasing vacation spot for customers. Not solely did the net market large seize the largest share of Black Friday {dollars} within the U.S. with a whopping 17.7% of the market, it additionally represented the most important share of BigCommerce market gross sales.

Social commerce channels noticed an explosive 98% progress in GMV YoY. Fb stays king on the social commerce scene with the most important proportion of Cyber Week social commerce gross sales.

3. Channels match for each shopper, every single day.

Based mostly on this yr’s outcomes, we discovered that Trend and Jewellery and Sports activities and Open air have been the highest classes on Fb and Instagram, whereas Well being and Magnificence carried out greatest on Amazon.  

We additionally discovered that Cyber Monday was the strongest day for Amazon gross sales, whereas extra clients shopped on Fb and Instagram throughout Black Friday. Moreover, it got here as no shock that small-business geared market Etsy noticed its peak gross sales on Small Enterprise Saturday as extra clients shopped small.

BigCommerce VP of Income Progress and GM Omnichannel, Sharon Gee, shares her ideas on Cyber Week omnichannel progress:

“By now, retailers are conscious they should meet clients the place they’re — and this might not ring extra true primarily based on what BigCommerce has seen this vacation season. With notable will increase in social commerce and digital market gross sales this Cyber Week, retailers have to capitalize on the omnichannel alternative to promote the place their clients are purchasing. The regular improve in omnichannel gross sales will proceed to rise together with shopper expectations in 2022 and past.”

Different Fee Strategies Grew in Recognition

1. Clients need to Purchase Now, Pay Later.

As one of many high projected ecommerce tendencies for 2022, it’s no shock high purchase now, pay later (BNPL) options grew 39% YoY in GMV throughout Cyber Week.

BNPL fee choices have the potential to assist improve AOV by providing clients extra flexibility for big purchases. The highest BNPL AOV associate had triple the AOV of the next-closest gateway.

2. One-click checkout gross sales surge.

BigCommerce associate Bolt One Click on checkout accounted for 9% of total gross sales. Clients additionally spent extra per order when utilizing one-click checkout, as evidenced by Bolt’s common order worth coming in above the Cyber Week common and greater than doubling YoY.

Clients are clearly gravitating to the comfort of a one-click checkout possibility, as fewer clicks equal much less friction.

3. PayPal holds its fee energy.

Clients proceed to put extra Cyber Week orders with PayPal, which accounted for the most important share of whole orders.

For one more yr, PayPal continues to carry shopper desire. With its portfolio of other fee choices, clients are discovering the flexibleness they search throughout Digital Wallets, Venmo, PayPal Pay Later (Pay in 4) and extra. 

High-Promoting Classes by Gross sales

1. Clients are nonetheless buying pandemic favorites.

Heading into the vacation season, it was unknown if 2020’s shift in buying choices would proceed to impression shopping for behaviors.

The outcome: Pandemic favorites are nonetheless hottest amongst customers. Sporting Items continued to say the highest spot in GMV throughout similar shops, whereas additionally benefiting from an 8% GMV improve YoY. 

Trend and Jewellery remained the subsequent hottest class, adopted by High 3 newcomer Well being and Magnificence.

2. Extra clients purchased Well being and Magnificence merchandise throughout Cyber Week.

This Cyber Week, Well being and Magnificence merchandise have been the rising star. With extra clients returning to work and social gatherings, it comes as no shock that the class noticed a rise in recognition.

When analyzing BigCommerce’s same-store knowledge YoY, Well being and Magnificence merchandise outpaced the competitors with a steep 30% YoY achieve in GMV throughout Cyber Week. Particularly, Black Friday was the highest day for Well being and Magnificence purchases. Following Well being and Magnificence have been Trend and Jewellery (+16% in GMV YoY) and Automotive (+10% in GMV YoY).

Clients are additionally spending much less on Toys and Video games throughout Cyber Week, because the class noticed the sharpest decline in YoY GMV progress coming in at a -21% loss.

3. Marriage ceremony gross sales are on the rise.

Following the ripple impact of pandemic marriage ceremony delays, 2022 is predicted to see 2.47 million weddings — double that of 2020. Unsurprisingly extra clients have been making wedding-related purchases this Cyber Week. Throughout all BigCommerce retailers, Marriage ceremony and Bridal retailers noticed a 49% spike in GMV YoY.

Journey gross sales took a steep -76% YoY dip in GMV, displaying that clients could not fairly be able to journey once more.

Cyber Week Gained Worldwide Floor

Whereas Cyber Week stays a predominantly U.S. vacation, we continued to see a lift in lots of international locations becoming a member of the Cyber Weekend custom. Listed below are the highest ten international locations by GMV:

  1. Australia
  2. United Kingdom
  3. Canada
  4. New Zealand
  5. Eire
  6. Germany
  7. Hong Kong
  8. China
  9. South Africa
  10. Egypt

1. Asia-Pacific outpaced different areas.

Asia-Pacific (APAC) made vital strides throughout Cyber Week with the most important regional progress in GMV (+40% YoY) and orders (+42% YoY). 

Well being and Magnificence and Trend and Jewellery have been the most well-liked classes amongst APAC customers. Whereas Trend and Jewellery was noticeably the most well-liked class in EMEA, the area noticed far fewer gross sales in Well being and Magnificence, however extra gross sales in Automotive and House and Backyard than APAC.

2. Black Friday was the most well-liked worldwide Cyber Week purchasing day.

In distinction to U.S. outcomes, extra worldwide gross sales have been made on Black Friday than another day of Cyber Week.

Australia noticed the most important variety of Cyber Week gross sales every day apart from Black Friday, throughout which The UK took the primary worldwide spot.

3. Latin America stands out from the group.

The Latin American (LATAM) area continues to indicate ecommerce progress potential — with Latin American international locations demonstrating a 17% improve in Cyber Week orders YoY.

Cyber Week gross sales in El Salvador noticed the most important GMV progress by nation at an astonishing 400X over the earlier yr. Different Latin American international locations with standout progress included Argentina and Brazil.

Trying Forward

As evidenced by the 2021 vacation purchasing season so far, it’s clear that ecommerce progress is constant its upward development. With U.S. on-line gross sales anticipated to achieve $1 trillion in 2022, retailers ought to proceed investing in ecommerce to be able to meet clients the place they’re.

Retailers can get forward for the rest of the 2021 vacation season and heading into 2022 by executing on these methods.

1. Ramp up for returns.

With extra vacation orders, retailers ought to brace for extra vacation returns. Though typically neglected, the post-purchase expertise — together with returns — is a key element of offering a seamless total buyer expertise. Having a versatile return coverage or prolonged return interval in place could make or break the end-to-end expertise for patrons this vacation season.

2. Proceed to supply out-of-stock options.

As of October, Adobe reported out-of-stock messages had risen by 172% in comparison with the pre-pandemic interval, and can possible hit more durable following the vacation rush. For delayed merchandise, providing reward playing cards, enabling back-in-stock notifications and permitting pre-orders are a number of methods retailers can get forward of provide chain delays.

3. Count on last-minute consumers to Purchase On-line, Pickup in Retailer.

With present delivery deadlines coming quickly, count on last-minute consumers to be in a bind. In line with Adobe, click-and-collect orders surged to 32.1% of ecommerce orders in the course of the week of Christmas in 2020, up from 19.4% the prior week. Retailers ought to count on curbside pickup and purchase on-line, pickup in retailer (BOPIS) to spike as we rely down the times to December 25.

4. Embrace the Purchase Now, Pay Later increase.

High BNPL fee gateways noticed 39% progress in GMV on BigCommerce throughout Cyber Week. Providing versatile financing choices is only one approach to cut back friction at checkout — plus, one of many advantages of providing BNPL options is their potential to additionally drive larger AOV. With practically 3 in 10 digital patrons predicted to make use of BNPL as a fee possibility in 2022, the time to supply purchase now, pay later is now.

5. Begin tapping into social commerce.

For those who realized one factor from Cyber Week 2021, it’s that social commerce is on the rise. eMarketer experiences that US social commerce gross sales will rise by practically 25% in 2022. With extra customers discovering merchandise on-line, assembly your clients the place they’re scrolling is extra necessary than ever. Retailers can make the most of BigCommerce’s integrations with Fb, Instagram and TikTok and begin promoting on social media.

6. Loyalty, loyalty, loyalty.

With out-of-stock surprises forcing clients to desert model loyalty this season, protecting clients coming again will probably be extra necessary than ever. Make sure you provide perks and rewards for vacation purchases, and capitalize on the inflow of information insights to be taught extra about the right way to join and construct long-term model loyalty along with your clients.


Cyber Week 2021 is behind us, however its outcomes have clear implications for the way forward for ecommerce. The continued rise in ecommerce and shifts in purchasing habits as seen over the previous week will possible persist in 2022, and BigCommerce stays an industry-leading platform with the performance and suppleness geared up to fulfill retailers’ ever-changing enterprise wants. 

BigCommerce is right here to assist retailers by means of the rest of the vacation season and heading into 2022. For last-minute vacation suggestions and ways, make sure you try the BigCommerce 2021 Information to Vacation Planning.

To realize much more Cyber Week and vacation insights, tune in to our upcoming episode of the Make it Huge Podcast, the place we’ll dive deeper into {industry} tendencies, buyer examples and extra.


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