Online Black Friday sales between midnight and 7am have fallen by nearly a quarter (24%) compared with last year, data from PCA Predict has shown.
However, there was an 11% increase in online shopping in the week before Black Friday, the data intelligence company reported.
Geographically, south-east London produced the highest number of online transactions in the early hours of the morning, followed by Nottingham and east London, Kingston upon Thames and north-west London.
Chris Boaz, head of marketing at PCA Predict, said: “[Last] night there was a huge surge in sales as people tried to beat the morning rush to snap up the best deals. By contrast last year, many consumers shopped from midnight to 7am to bag a bargain.
“One of the primary reasons for this is the extended Sales in the run-up to Black Friday itself, which showed an increase of 11%, meaning consumers aren’t as pressed as they once were to shop on the day. This longer sales period has shifted the emphasis away from Black Friday being a major retail event in its own right, towards becoming part of a pre-Christmas mini-season or “Golden Quarter” for retailers.”
Meanwhile ecommerce consultancy Salmon has found that between midnight and 6am, 26% of visits took place in the first hour. There was a lull between 1am and 5am, before traffic peaked again at 6am.
According to the findings, 6am was the busiest period with 81% of visits coming from a mobile device. This increased by 8% increase on its 2016 equivalent, with shoppers buying as they wake up and commute to work.
A 74% majority of transactions came from a mobile device during these hours.