Black Friday Now a Worldwide Phenomena

Last Update: November 10, 2017

Black Friday began as a culturally significant day in the US, but that all changed in 2010, when Amazon began promoting it in the UK as well. Now, seven short years later, Black Friday is a huge shopping day in nearly every country in the world. Understanding some of the key facts about Black Friday can help you maximize your sales results on this special day.

The research I’m sharing comes from The Awin Report, a 144 page document of original and compiled research which offers a snapshot of today’s affiliate marketing industry. A free copy is available on the blog. (Full disclosure – I work for, the largest affiliate network in the world.)

The Global Market

“Though they may not know what Black Friday is, they can’t resist a good deal. If the deal is right, consumers will find it!” That’s how a major retail executive described the global adoption of Black Friday.

Some of the interesting developments noted on Black Friday 2016:

  • Italy – mobile sales almost doubled from 14 > 27% of total sales
  • Black Friday went mainstream for the first time in countries like The Netherlands and France.
  • Brazil consumers love discounts and for a single day will shop faster than their normal pace. Many moved online for the first time
  • Black Friday isn’t as big in Australia, where it’s just one of many special shopping days leading to Christmas.
  • For most of the world, Black Friday now significantly outpaces Cyber Monday. 69% of sales took place on Black Friday vs. 31% of sales on Cyber Monday, as that day continues to slip away from public consciousness.

The US Market

In 2016 total US shopping on Black Friday was estimated at $7B. For the first time online sales overtook offline sales definitely, as 108M shopped online vs. 99M who went to brick & mortar stores.

The US is different when it comes to Black Friday/Cyber Monday activity, with 44% of sales occurring on Black Friday and 56% on Cyber Monday. Seems American consumers take full advantage of shopping during their work day.

Device/Time of Day Matters

Though desktop remains the primary form of choice for shoppers on a global basis throughout the day, smartphones continue to grow. In fact, during the commuting hours between 6-8 am, phones are the most active device in all respective time zones.

Overall sales over smartphones grew on average 5 times the rate of desktops and 3 times that of tablets.

Smartphone sales do vary by sector, however. Purchases of more impulse items, like “fast” fashion, virtually explodes on smart phones, but purchases requiring more deliberate consideration such as travel perform lower on smartphones than other devices. That’s why cross device tracking is so critical to affiliate success, especially for bloggers (I’ll post on that technology shortly).

Conversion Patterns Differ

Consumers are ready to buy on Black Friday! 86% of total transactions converted within the same day of the click, with 80% occurring within the same hour. Normally that ratio is 85% and 77%. Normally content sites are used for research purposes and thus have a much longer conversion time period, but on Black Friday they convert at nearly 75% on the same day, including 69% within the same hour.

Consumers Treat Themselves Too

Our research shows that half of consumers plan to treat themselves on Black Friday as well, finally getting that new TV or phone, or those expensive boots or sweater they’ve wanted all year now that it’s finally on sale.

How To Prepare Your Site for Black Friday

Test to ensure the mobile version of your site is working well, easy to navigate and clicks through to your advertisers. Try different devices to make sure as well.

Highlight any deals, especially coupon codes – 30% of all transactions involved a coupon.

Use merchants with longer cookies and put up your articles early. That way if a consumer “reads up” in advance on your site, your cookie will already be in place should they go straight to the advertiser on Black Friday. There's still time to join those affiliate programs on networks like

On a day when tracks over 600 sales per minute, almost 380,000 clicks an hour, and pays out literally millions of dollars in commissions from the day’s events, make sure you claim your share of the Black Friday windfall!

This is a link to join Awin – it is not my affiliate link but does alert my team that you are a member of Wealthy Affiliate so we can fast track your application review.

Please contact me if you'd like a code to join as my guest.

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mickeyb123 Premium
Thank you for this informative post about the concept of Black Friday. (and we all thought it was an American thing!)
JeannineC Premium
Isn't that amazing? Once Amazon pushed it outside the US borders, it took off like wildfire. I have even more statistics, but this was getting long enough as it was.
MKearns Premium
If you build a better mouse trap the world beats a path to your door...Black Friday!
Loes Premium
Everything from overseas is coming to the Netherlands, only a few years later:) Black Friday has done its entre too. A lot of people are now having Thanks Giving and skip out on St. Nicolas and replaced him for Santa. Not always a good thing that people leave their own cultural events and follow the events of other countries.
JeannineC Premium
Wow, that's quite a change. Not sure you have to leave one to follow another, but some people do choose that.
Loes Premium
I believe, the December month is gone be too expensive to follow up both with all that presents.
Kyle Premium
Excellent post and breakdown of this little event we have coming up called "Black Friday" (well not so little). It has definitely become our biggest event here within WA, and it certainly has been the most lucrative for our affiliates, as well as members operating within just about every category.

And it only continues to grow what's the proliferation of the Internet users, and Internet shoppers.

Wishing you guys the most successful Black Friday yet over at Awin, I have no doubts you will exceed this years expectations!
JeannineC Premium
Thanks, Kyle! We have more servers than you could ever imagine ready and waiting to handle all the traffic that comes through our system that day. It's insane - and so fun!
VeronicasLuv Premium
WOW!!! I don't know why, but I never considered Black Friday to exist outside of the United States! Who knew!!! I'll have to add this to my favorites! Thanks for sharing this, Jeannine!
JeannineC Premium
Glad you found it interesting! Since the internet isn't bound by geographic borders, so many folks attract visitors outside their home borders. I want everyone to benefit from that!