More People Shopped Online Than In-Store Over Black Friday Weekend

And even more people plan to shop Cyber Monday.
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Eliza Brooke
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And even more people plan to shop Cyber Monday.
Women hit the shops on Black Friday. Photo: Yana Paskova/Getty Images

Women hit the shops on Black Friday. Photo: Yana Paskova/Getty Images

Increasingly, it seems like the only thing differentiating Cyber Monday from the rest of Black Friday weekend is the fact that people have to discreetly shop from their work stations instead of their couches. Just as sales beginning well before Thanksgiving have diminished the importance of one big shopping day, e-commerce is eroding the tradition of confronting the crowds at the mall: Data from the National Retail Federation published Sunday shows that of the 151 million-plus people who shopped over the weekend, 102 million did so in stores and 103 million purchased online. (Clearly there's some overlap between the two.)

If all goes according to the research, that number is only going to increase. The NRF reports that 121 million people in the U.S. say they're planning to shop Cyber Monday, down slightly from the 126.9 million people who stated the same intention last year. 

Of course, this doesn't mean that in-store shopping is dead. Almost half of people who shopped IRL on Thanksgiving showed up to the store at or before midnight, an option, interestingly, that was even more popular among people aged 18 to 34. Perhaps youthful enthusiasm outweighs millennials' propensity for doing everything online — though it's not like they went phone-less. Nearly 57 percent of smartphone owners used their phones to research, purchase and check products' in-store availability.