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Super Saturday Was More Like Super Weekend for Retailers

With a slow to start holiday sales season, retailers were banking on bringing in big bucks on Super Saturday (Dec. 19), the last shopping Saturday pre-Christmas.

And for the most part, the day did prove super—namely for online retailers.

According to Verizon’s Retail Index, which monitors consumer shopping over its broadband and mobile data networks, e-commerce shopping activity was 19 percent above average daily traffic on Super Saturday, the highest since the Sunday after Black Friday.

Average daily mobile commerce was 6 percent higher than average on Super Saturday, though it was down overall compared to the same day last year. Peak volumes, however, spiked 15 percent above average on the day, reflecting that retailers are increasingly reaching shoppers via mobile apps on their smartphones and tablets.

“As expected, there was a surge in both online and mobile commerce on Super Saturday as consumers rushed to wrap up their shopping,” said Michele Dupré, group vice president of retail, hospitality and distribution for Verizon Enterprise Solutions. “This effective one-two punch combined with heavy in-store traffic means it was a solid day for retailers, though all indications are that there is still shopping to be done and wallet share to be gained in these final days before Christmas.”

On Sunday, e-tail shopping activity soared 20 percent above average and traffic for the weekend overall was equal to the Saturday and Sunday between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Verizon reported.

Mobile traffic the day after Super Saturday was 3 percent higher than normal, and for the two days combined outpaced all other weekend volumes since tracking started pre-Thanksgiving.

“An annual holiday tradition, the procrastinators are now bringing it home for the industry and have been feverishly shopping online, from their mobile devices and in stores,” Dupré said. “The question becomes will these last-minute shoppers take advantage of the new retail conveniences such as ‘curbside’ pick-up and extended store hours, or will they gamble and bank on guaranteed delivery promises to make sure their gifts arrive on time?”

According to Dupré, retailers have more yet to gain in the days to Christmas and now is not the time to let up on promotions.