Friday , October 19, 2018

The Signs Point to More Payment Volume for Merchant Acquirers This Holiday Season

Early reports about consumer spending over the long Thanksgiving weekend indicate that merchant processors serving both brick-and-mortar and online merchants can expect more payment volume this year than last.

With CyberMonday, the Monday after Thanksgiving, now in full swing, the outlook for online sales is strong if a report from e-commerce platform provider Shopify Inc. is any indication. Ottawa, Ontario-based Shopify says that on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, more than U.S. $1 million in sales per minute went through its platform at its peak, besting last 2016’s Black Friday peak of $555,716 per minute. Shopify serves more than 500,000 merchants.

American Express says that 70% of U.S. consumers are aware of Small Business Saturday, it’s annual promotion urging consumers to shop locally.

On a related note, mobile devices continued to grab more share of total e-commerce. Shopify reports that 66% of Black Friday orders came through a mobile phone or tablet, up from 58% in 2016. Desktop sales fell to 34% of orders from last year’s 42%.

In the physical retailing world, the International Council of Shopping Centers trade group reported that more than 145 million adults visited malls and shopping centers over the weekend, spending an average of $377.50. The total breaks down to $179.30 on holiday gifts, $102 on non-gift items, and $96.20 on dining and entertainment.

Some 74% of Thanksgiving and Black Friday shoppers spent the same or more than they did in the same period a year ago, according to an online poll of more than 1,000 adults conducted for the New York City-based ICSC.

And American Express Co. and the National Federation of Independent Business estimated that 108 million shopped or dined at local, independent businesses on Small Business Saturday, the Saturday after Thanksgiving. AmEx created the event in 2010 to promote sales at its small merchants in the wake of the recession.

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