Thanksgiving Day 2018: The Fastest and Slowest Retail Websites

In Blog by Josh Carter / November 23, 2018

    A record-breaking $3.7B was spent online on Thanksgiving Day. That’s up 28% from last year.

    Traffic was up 40% from Wednesday for Blue Triangle’s retail customers.

    Blue Triangle retail customer traffic: 11/21 – 11/22

    But the uptick in traffic comes with a cost: more site outages and slower page speeds.

    Fortunately, unlike last year, there were no major website outages on Thanksgiving. That said, many websites, including The North Face, Bebe, and slowed down significantly on Thanksgiving.

    In the retail environment, a website slow-down can make the difference between a won or lost sale. Marketing dollars spent getting people to a website are wasted when customers leave your site because of site speed issues.

    The graph below from Blue Triangle’s Real User Monitoring demonstrates that a slower site can lead to a lower conversion rate:

    Speed matters, especially during the holidays.

    This report is based on Home Page measurements run by Blue Triangle’s Synthetic Monitoring.

    Rank the speeds of the Top 500 eCommerce sites Black Friday – Cyber Monday.

    Page speed by vertical

    Vertical Thanksgiving Day Page Speed (sec)
    Flowers/Gifts 2.99
    Automotive Parts/Accessories 3.09
    Books/Music/Video 3.23
    Sporting Goods 3.43
    Hardware/Home Improvement 3.47
    Office Supplies 3.51
    Specialty 3.87
    Housewares/Home Furnishings 3.95
    Computers/Electronics 3.96
    Apparel/Accessories 4.01
    Health/Beauty 4.06
    Jewelry 4.14
    Toys/Hobbies 4.19
    Mass Merchant 4.45
    Food/Drug 4.77

    Major retailers

    Site Thanksgiving Day Page Speed (sec) Vertical
    W.W. Grainger 1.27 Hardware/Home Improvement
    Apple 1.71 Books/Music/Video
    Wayfair 1.94 Housewares/Home Furnishings
    Gap 2.32 Apparel/Accessories
    Home Depot 2.53 Hardware/Home Improvement
    Etsy 2.54 Mass Merchant
    Staples 2.54 Office Supplies 2.87 Mass Merchant
    Groupon Goods 2.9 Mass Merchant
    Dell 2.94 Computers/Electronics
    Sears 3.27 Mass Merchant
    Lenovo 3.81 Computers/Electronics
    Kohls 4.00 Apparel/Accessories
    Nordstrom 4.06 Apparel/Accessories
    Newegg 4.87 Computers/Electronics
    Costco 4.91 Mass Merchant
    Best Buy 5.17 Computers/Electronics
    Williams-Sonoma 5.68 Housewares/Home Furnishings
    Target 5.83 Mass Merchant
    Office Depot 6.51 Office Supplies
    Macy’s 6.56 Apparel/Accessories
    QVC 6.95 Mass Merchant
    Lowe’s 7.12 Hardware/Home Improvement
    CDW 7.49 Computers/Electronics
    Victoria’s Secret 7.68 Apparel/Accessories

    Who slowed down Thanksgiving Day?

    Who sped up Thanksgiving Day?

    Stay up to date

    Blue Triangle is working with major retailers like The Home Depot and Office Depot this holiday season to ensure peak performance and optimal revenue.

    See where the top 500 retailers stack up weekly: Access the Retail Digital Experience Index

    Should you have any questions, comments or concerns, please send me an email:

    Read the other reports:

    Josh Carter
    Director of Marketing at Blue Triangle
    As Blue Triangle's Director of Marketing, Josh enjoys sharing ways businesses can improve digital experience and revenue. He is also an avid swimmer, runner, cyclist and drummer.