New BFCM Report: Festive online fashion shopping rebounds globally after dipping in 2020 as the beauty sector continues to thrive


Nosto’s Black Friday Cyber Monday (BFCM) report indicates that fashion ecommerce performance bounced back after dipping last holiday season.

The average order value (AOV) for Fashion & Accessories purchases was up 12% year-on-year (YoY) during this year’s BFCM weekend on the back of a -3% fall in 2020. And while online traffic for ecommerce as a whole was down 7% and sales up 2% this year, fashion bucks the trend slightly with visits up 2% and sales up 3%.

“With conversion rates in fashion falling 9%, and average online orders 12% bigger, it feels like people are being more selective this year,” said Chloe Pascal, Nosto’s Global Head of Marketing. “But they’re willing to splash out on more expensive items when they do spend, perhaps because they held back last season. It’s also likely that after last year’s poor numbers, retailers are working harder than ever to encourage shoppers by personalising the experience to show visitors the most relevant products and using bundled offers and tiered discounts – ‘Get 20% off if you spend over £100’ -  to boost average order values.”

Nosto’s analysis is based on over 88 million visits across 907 ecommerce stores over the BFCM weekend in Europe, North America, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand.

Health & Beauty continues to thrive online 

Last year, Health & Beauty ecommerce benefited from the pivot to ecommerce which pushed online traffic up 11%, sales up 22%, and conversion rates up 2% during BFCM weekend. This year, although the opening up of in-store shopping may underpin the 6% decrease in online traffic, there were still increases in online sales (2%), conversion rate (1%), and AOV (9%).

“While the year-on-year sales increase is not as big as last year, it looks like consumers’ experience of doing more online shopping for beauty is having a lasting impact,” said Pascal.  “People are growing more accustomed to buying beauty online, no doubt helped by retailers’ wider use of innovations such as virtual try-on and video consultations which recreate the feel of an in-store experience to make shoppers feel more confident about their purchases.”

Food & Beverages ecommerce falls away from the highs of last year

In 2020, pandemic restrictions on in-store shopping meant Food & Beverages was one of the most successful ecommerce verticals during the BFCM weekend (traffic increased 31% and sales 45%). This year the sector experienced significant decreases in traffic (down 22%) and sales (down 17%). The good news is that those who are shopping for groceries online are more likely to buy when they visit a store and are spending more when they do - online conversion rates enjoyed a healthy 5% boost, while AOV increased by 6%. 

BFCM Ecommerce Performance in 5 Key Verticals, 2021 v 2020





Conversion Rate

Home & Garden





Health & Beauty





Fashion & Accessories





Food & Beverages





Sporting Goods & Hobbies






Overall ecommerce traffic down on last year

Globally across ecommerce, traffic is down 7% YOY while sales are up 2%, based on data from Nosto. And compared to last year, people are spending 7% less time on site and viewing 9% fewer pages with conversion rates slightly down (2%). Overall, 69% of traffic, 53% of sales, and 56% of orders were taken on mobile, however, people are still more likely to convert on desktop than mobile (3.9% v 2.26%). 

BFCM Ecommerce Performance by Device in 2021




Conversion Rate 













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