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Thanksgiving 2023 isn’t just about the turkey and cranberry sauce on our plates; it’s about the sizzling deals simmering on the sales horizon.

As the golden leaves fall and the holiday spirit embraces us, businesses everywhere are gearing up for one of the most bustling sales weekends of the year.

Below, we’ll discuss the history, the strategies, and the sheer energy of this iconic American holiday turned global sales phenomenon. 


The Evolution of Thanksgiving Sales


Just as how it was initially celebrated, Thanksgiving 2023 will no doubt center around gratitude, family, and hearty feasts. 

However, as the wheels of commerce turned since the first festival celebrated by the pilgrims, businesses identified the holiday as an opportune moment to capture shoppers’ attention.

Traditionally, Thanksgiving deals and seller promotions were confined to brick-and-mortar stores. Such discounts heralded the start of the holiday shopping season.

As times evolved, so did the landscape of these promo events. Enter Black Friday – a term now associated with the year’s biggest doorbuster deals and discounts

Retailers and brands soon realized the enormous potential of this day, turning the Friday after Thanksgiving into a battleground of promotions.

But as transformative as Black Friday was, the shopping landscape was about to undergo another seismic shift. With the rise of the internet, Cyber Monday was born.

If Black Friday was the king of in-store shopping, Cyber Monday was the crowned prince of the eCommerce realm.


Thanksgiving Marks the Start of Cyber Five


While Black Friday and Cyber Monday often steal the spotlight in the holiday sales narrative, Thanksgiving sales in eCommerce have steadily emerged as a significant force, creating their own space in the sales ecosystem. 

In fact, the quintessential holiday marks the start of Cyber Five, which encompasses the following Q4 selling events:

  • Thanksgiving
  • Black Friday
  • Small Business Saturday
  • Cyber Sunday
  • Cyber Monday


The tangible impact of these Q4 events is evident in sales reports. Adobe’s Holiday Shopping Trends and Insights Report reveals online expenditures in the US in November and December 2022 amounted to $211.7 billion. 

Holiday Shopping Trends and Insights Report (Source Adobe)
Holiday Shopping Trends and Insights Report (Source – Adobe)

An online spend of $5.3 billion was recorded on Thanksgiving, increasing to $9.12 billion during Black Friday and further swelling up to $11.3 billion for Cyber Monday.

The trajectory of Cyber Five clearly showcases them as pivotal moments in the eCommerce calendar, driving both consumer interest and significant revenue.


Current Trends: Thanksgiving 2023


Preparing for Thanksgiving 2023 entails having an informed strategy and meticulous planning anchored on data.

Here are specific trends from data analyses that offer valuable insights for sellers planning for Thanksgiving 2023.


Cyber Five Reigns Supreme During the Holiday Season


Sales records from 2022 reveal that Cyber Five is unparalleled in terms of raking in holiday sales on Amazon and other platforms.

However, a closer look reveals a nuanced story. As per data presented by Queue-it, Cyber Five sales were higher in 2021 compared to 2022.

Cyber Five online retail traffic (Source - Queue-it)
Cyber Five online retail traffic (Source – Queue-it)

These numbers indicate a possible diversification in holiday shopping habits, with consumers possibly starting earlier or seeking deals beyond the traditionally highlighted days.


Gaming, Entertainment, and Kitchen Tech Products were Top Sellers


Hot product categories during Thanksgiving 2022 include gaming, entertainment, and kitchen tech products.

Adobe’s Holiday Shopping Trends and Insights Report specifically lists the following trending items during Thanksgiving last year:

  • Nintendo Switch
  • Roblox
  • God of War – Ragnarök
  • Paw Patrol
  • Instapots


Tech, gaming, and digital entertainment remained in high demand during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. 

Hot products of 2022 (Source - Adobe)
Hot products of 2022 (Source – Adobe)

Given this data, it’s not surprising if more or less the same product categories will stay fast-moving for Thanksgiving 2023. 


Half of Online Retail Traffic Comes from Mobile Devices  


According to a report from Queue-it through its Traffic Insights, a notable 53% of all web visits during the Holiday Season were conducted via mobile devices. Desktops trailed behind as the next major traffic source, accounting for 37% of the visits.

Share of retail traffic by device (Source - Queue-it)
Share of retail traffic by device (Source – Queue-it)

However, an interesting nuance emerges when considering conversion rates. Throughout the year, and consistently during the Holiday Season, desktops boasted a higher conversion rate of 5.6%, while mobile lagged at 3.3%.

Given that over half of the Holiday Season traffic is rooted in mobile and considering the fierce competition in the online retail space, optimizing mobile websites for efficiency and speed is paramount for Thanksgiving 2023.


Tips for Brands to Shine in Thanksgiving 2023 Sales


Here are some crucial pointers for brands aiming to shine and make the most out of Thanksgiving 2023.


Prioritize Inventory Management


Review your 2022 Thanksgiving sales to identify which products flew off the virtual shelves and which stagnated. You can also look at product categories that did well on eCommerce platforms to be informed of possible items you may want to include in your offerings.

Use these data sets to get Thanksgiving 2023 ideas and to make informed inventory decisions for 2023.

Actionable tip

Consider reserving stock. Amazon shoppers are known for their last-minute buying sprees. Keep a reserved stock, especially for top sellers, to ensure you’re not marked “out of stock” during peak shopping hours.

Related content: Product Sourcing for Amazon Sellers


Streamline Logistics


Inventory management can be daunting during high-demand periods like the Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday stretch. If you’re not already using it, consider Amazon FBA for the holiday season. 

With FBA, Amazon’s warehouses store your products, ensuring they can handle the increased order volume. This means sellers don’t need to panic about running out of storage space or being overwhelmed by shipping demands.

In addition, products under FBA often get the coveted Prime badge, making them more appealing to Amazon Prime members, who are typically more frequent and higher-spending shoppers.

Actionable tip 

Amazon often has specific cut-off dates for the holiday season. Ensure you’re well-acquainted with these to promise accurate delivery dates to your customers.

Related content: Amazon FBA Restock Limits


Market With Precision


For Amazon sellers, the marketplace’s advertising solutions are a treasure trove for understanding customer behavior. These insights can be pivotal in crafting ad campaigns that resonate through tailored marketing.

When marketing for Thanksgiving 2023, it also pays to be attuned to the top holiday trends of the year. 

Regularly monitor trend reports, industry news, and social media to keep a pulse on what’s hot. Being in the know can be a game-changer, whether it’s a color like rose gold or a particular style.

Actionable tip

If a particular trend is making waves, adjust your product images to highlight that feature. For instance, if eco-friendly products are in demand, showcasing your product’s sustainable aspects can be a magnet for potential buyers.


Make Every Click Count


Make the most out of your Thanksgiving 2023 online traffic by optimizing your product listings. Ensure your product titles, descriptions, and images are clear, high-quality, and keyword-optimized to improve visibility on Amazon’s search results.

With a surge in online sales made via mobile phones, it’s not enough for product listings to be mobile-friendly; they need to be mobile-optimized

This means images that load quickly and are zoomable, descriptions that get straight to the point but still engage, and a checkout process that’s smooth and intuitive on smaller screens.

Actionable tip

Audit your listings. Begin by reviewing your current product listings. Identify any areas of improvement in titles, descriptions, or images.

Related content: Product Listing Management


Offer Thanksgiving or Cyber Five Bundles


Consider having specially curated packages of products sold together at a discounted price for Thanksgiving or Cyber Five. 

Bundles typically offer products at a price lower than the total cost if each item were purchased separately. This perceived “deal” is a substantial incentive for shoppers looking for savings during the holiday season.

Actionable tip

Emphasize the limited availability of these bundles to create a sense of urgency, prompting quicker buying decisions. In addition, clearly display the discount or savings a buyer will get from purchasing the bundle vs individual products for a compelling sales pitch.


The Lowdown


As you gear up for Thanksgiving 2023, remember it’s not just about participating in the holiday sales race but understanding its rhythm, its nuances, and its trends.

The data makes it clear: the Cyber Five is a formidable force in the eCommerce world, dictating the pace of sales and shaping consumer behavior. 

For Amazon sellers and eCommerce businesses, the key lies in meticulous planning, data-driven strategies, and ensuring that every customer interaction—every click—counts. 



Carla Bauto DenaCarla Bauto Deña is a journalist and content writer producing stories for traditional and digital media. She believes in empowering small businesses with the help of innovative solutions, such as eCommerce, digital marketing, and data analytics.

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