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Russians Embrace Black Friday Sales

Online purchases up 30% over discount weekend.

Russians spent $350 million on Black Friday sales with online retailers, industry data shows. Yegor Aleyev / TASS

Russian shoppers spent 30% more in Black Friday online sales this year than they did in 2018, the head of Russia’s internet retail association said Monday.

Despite not celebrating Thanksgiving, Russian retailers and consumers still embraced the shopping bonanza that kicks off the day after the U.S. holiday. In total, Russians spent 22.3 billion rubles ($350 million) in online shops on Black Friday, Artem Sokolov, president of the Association of Internet Retail Companies told Russian news site RIA Novosti.

Total sales over the Black Friday weekend were up from 17.4 billion rubles in 2018. A number of online retailers reported strong growth in the number of customers, while the average value of each purchase dipped slightly. Sales at Ozon, one of Russia’s largest online retailers, were up more than 150% compared to Black Friday last year, while the average purchase was down 6% to 2,700 rubles ($43).

Young adults between 25 and 34 were most likely to make an online purchase, accounting for a quarter of all sales, data from Real Black Friday, a website that collects and compares Black Friday sales for different Russian retailers, showed. The oldest and youngest, those over 55 and under 25 were the least likely to take part. The website also said men made 60% of purchases, with electronics and household appliances proving the most popular categories.

Last month Russian shoppers set new records for online sales on China’s equivalent to Black Friday — Singles’ Day — spending $270 million in just 24 hours.

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