Square Payroll labor data shows a 19% increase in holiday staffing, with employees clocking 3.8M labor hours across the shopping weekend
Over the Black Friday and Cyber Monday weekend, Square and Afterpay sellers saw more than 61M transactions as consumers globally kicked off the holiday shopping season. For a detailed look, view our complete Black Friday / Cyber Monday Results. Square and Afterpay’s Festive Forecast report indicated that nearly 80% of consumers intend to spend the same if not more compared to last year, signaling that sellers should continue to prepare for buyer demand during the holidays.
The peak minute for shopping occurred on Monday, November 28 at 11:15 am ET. Cities with the largest volume of sales were New York & Brooklyn, London, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, and Toronto. As for staffing over the busy shopping weekend, Square found a 19% increase in the number of employees who worked, with more than 260,000 employees working a total of 3.8M hours; the average employee clocked around 14 hours.
“The Black Friday and Cyber Monday weekend kicks off the biggest shopping season for businesses – but it’s only the beginning,” said Alyssa Henry, Head of Square. “We’re entering a pivotal month for businesses to end the year with strong momentum, especially given recent headwinds. Sellers should leverage multiple revenue streams across online and in-person to ensure a successful holiday season, using software like marketing and loyalty programs to keep their business top of mind and to attract customers.”
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Transactions of Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) methods through Afterpay grew 120% compared to pre-holiday across online and in-person. This is in line with findings from Square and Afterpay’s Festive Forecast report where one in six Americans reported that they planned to use BNPL during the gift-giving period.
Gift cards continue to be a top selling item during the holidays, with more than 245,000 physical and e-gift cards sold this year. The top industries for gift card sales were food and beverage, beauty and personal care, and healthcare and fitness. Consumers who preferred to purchase physical gifts saw an average Black Friday / Cyber Monday discount of 21%, with sellers using Square Marketing to advertise their offers and drive sales.
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Fastest growing Afterpay item categories:
- Food and Beverage: 251%
- Hardware: 128%
- Travel and Experiences: 57%
- Automotive: 32%
- Footwear: 16%
Trending Afterpay search terms:
- PS5: 142%
- Gift cards: 30%
- Toys: 40%
- Nintendo Switch: 132%
- Xbox: 100%
Trending online products purchased with Afterpay:
- Beauty advent calendars
- Fluffy slides