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Black Friday Site Traffic Increases 52%

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Online traffic to Black Friday advertising websites is rising earlier in 2007 compared to 2006, Hitwise reported today. Online traffic to a custom category of Black Friday advertising websites increased 52 percent for the week ending Nov. 10, 2007 compared to Nov. 11, 2006.

Online interest in Black Friday is taking place earlier this year and becoming more widespread than the past two holiday seasons. Searches on the term "black Friday ads" are up 91 percent compared to last year and have increased 954 percent since 2005. This is a continuing trend as searches for the same term were up 452 percent in 2006 compared to 2005.

Wal-Mart received the most traffic from Black Friday advertising websites for the week ending Nov. 10, 2007 among a select group of brick and mortar stores. Sears and Best Buy received the second and third most U.S. traffic, respectively. In 2006, Best Buy, Circuit City and Sears were among offline brands to receive the most traffic from Black Friday websites.

"Consumers are becoming increasingly more knowledgeable about the availability of Black Friday promotions online and are actively seeking out the websites which offer the advertisements before public release," said Heather Dougherty, director of research at Hitwise.

"Much to the chagrin of some retailers, shoppers are well-aware of the leaked promotions and are able to plan their Black Friday purchases before Thanksgiving arrives. While some retailers resist having their sales announced prematurely, others are embracing these sites as a customer acquisition opportunity."

Online Holiday Shopping Update:
The Hitwise U.S. Retail 100 Index* chart shows that visits to the websites within the Index were up seven percent for the week ending Nov. 10, 2007 versus last week (Nov. 3, 2007). U.S. traffic is up 13 percent compared to the same week last year (Nov. 11, 2006).

Amazon.com remained the most-visited website within the Index last week, receiving 11 percent of visits among the Retail 100 Index. Wal-Mart received the second-most visits with six percent. Overstock.com was the biggest gainer for the week, as their traffic increased 18 percent compared to the previous week.

iPods and Uggs were the most popular search terms sending visits to Shopping and Classifieds websites for the week ending Nov. 10, 2007. The terms "ipod", "wii" and "uggs" were the top three product searches. The term "playstation 3" cracked the top 10 product searches for the first time this holiday season.

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Black Friday Site Traffic Increases 52%
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About Manoj Jasra
Manoj Jasra is an online marketing veteran of almost 10 years who specializes in analytics, social/search strategy and mobile marketing. Manoj is currently a Sr. Strategist at one of Canada's largest Telecommunications Companies, Shaw Communications Inc., where he leads Social Media, SEO, PPC and Web Analytics strategies. Manoj first started in the search marketing industry with Enquiro Search Solutions, where he spearheaded web analytics, SEO Training and the development of cutting edge search marketing solutions for clients.

Manoj is a Professional Speaker having participated at events such as Emetrics, Web Analytics Xchange, WebTrends' Engage, Internet Marketing Conference, Social Media Innovation Summit and Search Engine Strategies. He authors Web Analytics World (a top 100 Online Marketing Blog) and consults through his firm Jasra Inc. WebProNews Writer
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