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What’s Captifying The World: Nike Leads ‘Brand Friday’ Leaderboard as Sports and Fitness Surge

A Black Friday like no other

Once marked by long lines and overcrowded stores, the one-day Black Friday sales bonanza is now a month-long event, with brands and retailers dropping new deals every week.

According to TechCrunch, the global pandemic accelerated the shift to eCommerce by 5 years, forcing many brands to enhance or even create a digital presence for the first time. 

Above all, purchase behavior is changing fast as the world continues to navigate uncertainty. 

What’s clear is this Black Friday requires brands and retailers to pivot more quickly and effectively than ever. Consumer insight is key. 

Category interests shifts from electronics to sports and fitness

Captify analyzed billions of searches over November to understand how new and changing purchase behaviors have paved the way for shifts in category interest for Black Friday and the brands consumers are turning to.

Sports and fitness saw the biggest category increase compared to 2019, with a 243% search uplift, reflecting a shift in consumer priorities due to COVID-19. Other categories seeing uplifts include Fashion and Beauty (+95%) and CPG (+87%).

In 2019, consumer tech commanded 75% of Black Friday searches, more than six times the search volume of the second-highest category, games, and toys. In contrast, this year consumer tech saw an 87% search decrease and telco a 67% decrease in searches YoY. 

Lastly, with eight months of job losses and furloughs, Captify saw search interest increase around finance, reflecting that consumers are researching around personal finance and loans to fund gifting this holiday season.

The ‘Brand Friday’ leaderboard

These category shifts are further reinforced by the most searched for brands this Black Friday – revealing what consumers actually want, rather than purchases driven by the best deals.

Apple was the most searched for brand on Black Friday 2019, commanding more than 65% of brand searches. This year, sports and fitness fashion brands (Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour) top the leaderboard – commanding 75% share of search of the top 5 brands, with Nike holding nearly 50% alone. 

Entertainment brands, Disney+, and Lego, also spark search interest as consumers look for ways to keep their families entertained at home.

Popular categories are not always what you think, but Search data can inform more accurate planning

By understanding which direct or indirect competitors are going after their consumers’ disposable income gives brands a real strategic and tactical advantage. It also allows them to access and engage more meaningfully with new consumers through a mindset that reflects changing purchase behavior and habits.

By tracking share of search over time, brands can predict future scenarios, spot new and emerging audiences, and react to opportunities for conquesting competitors across different categories. 

To understand how category shifts might impact your brand’s share of search, get in touch.

*Data sourced from Captify’s global network from 11/01/20 to 11/24/20

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