Despite national news coverage of higher prices due to inflation and supply chain issues causing shortages and delays, retailers are still expecting rosy sales numbers during the Black Friday weekend, according to Mastercard’s SpendingPulse. As expected a year after many physical stores were closed, brick-and-mortar sales are expected to make a comeback. Mastercard expects overall Thanksgiving week sales to rise 10 percent from last year. Because of increased foot traffic, retail sales on Black Friday itself are expected to be 20 percent higher than last year.
For the first time in a long time, e-commerce sales growth will not outpace overall retail performance, but that’s largely a function of historic acceleration in 2020 compared to 2019. Online sales will still post a modest gain during the Black Friday period—up more than seven percent from last year and up 50.2 percent from two years ago.
“Holiday lights are shining bright for retailers this year,” said Steve Sadove, senior advisor for Mastercard and former CEO and Chairman of Saks Incorporated. “The consumer is strong and spending. With discounts in short supply, product innovation, availability and sustainability will be deciding factors for consumers eager to cross off their holiday shopping lists.”