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: Cyber Week discounts helped send November online prices on their biggest drop in nearly 3 years


Prices of things sold online fell 1.9% year-over-year in November, marking the biggest decline in 31 months, thanks in large part to big Cyber Week holiday discounts, Adobe said Thursday.

The media and analytics firm also noted a cooldown for prices of things like groceries and personal-care goods sold online, after food prices spiked earlier in the year.

During the month, prices for computers sold online fell 18% year-over-year, while prices for electronics fell 13.4% — the largest such decreases for both items since Adobe began tallying online prices in 2014. Prices for toys were down 7.7% from last year. Prices of sporting goods sank 5.7%. Deals related to Cyber Week, which this year ran from Thanksgiving through Nov. 28, helped pull prices lower.

Shoppers spent $116.5 billion online last month, Adobe said, up 1.7% from last November, as customers tried to take advantage of heavy markdowns. “It is clear that strong consumer spending has been driven by net-new demand — and not simply higher prices,” Adobe noted.

“While the November drop in online prices was driven by major discounting on days including Cyber Monday and Black Friday, we also see signs of overall e-commerce inflation cooling,” Patrick Brown, vice president of growth marketing and insights at Adobe, said in a statement.

“In categories such as groceries and personal care, which are not promotional in nature, we are seeing price increases come down from their heights in late summer and early fall,” he continued.

While those grocery prices jumped 13.7% year-over-year in November, they only rose 0.3% month-over-month. Prices for personal care products rose 1.8% from November 2021, but fell 3.4% from October.

Rising grocery prices have forced many shoppers this year to put off purchases of clothing and electronics. Retailers, in response, have embarked on a massive discounting spree in an effort to stimulate customer enthusiasm and clear inventories. Some analysts predicted that customers, perhaps hunting more aggressively for bargains this year amid the inflation crunch, would spend more during Black Friday and Cyber Monday than in previous years.

This year’s Cyber Monday — the online holiday-shopping event that occurs on the Monday after Black Friday — was the biggest shopping ever for the U.S., Adobe said. Americans spent $11.3 billion that Monday, with the rise of remote work possibly giving a lift to results.

During Cyber Week around the world, online sales rose  2% to a record $281 billion, according to Salesforce. The company noted that shoppers this year “held out for Cyber Week” this year, in an effort to secure better deals on gifts.

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