New York City fared well this year on Black Friday. Nearly $ 1 billion was spent in 30,000 stores across the five boroughs. Nationwide, a record 226 million shoppers spent about $52.4 billion as they visited stores and websites over the Black Friday weekend, breaking records across the board.

BIGresearch conducted a survey revealing that revealed on average, each shopper spent approximately $398, which is an increase from last year which saw shoppers spending about $365. More than half of the shoppers bought clothing and clothing accessories. About 40 percent bought electronic items, up from about 36 percent the previous year. Most shopping occurred at department stores and discounters, with about 49 percent and 38 percent. Additionally nearly 30 percent of customers bought items from electronic stores over the weekend too.

Stuffed to the brim from their holiday meals and eager to shop, more consumers than ever turned out for retailers' Black Friday promotions, a promising sign for the economic recovery, said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay in a statement. After an historic holiday weekend, retailers know the holiday season is far from over and will continue to look for ways to excite holiday shoppers and build on the momentum we've seen thus far.

In an effort to support small business, the 2nd annual Small Business Saturday kicked off in support of small, local business in the five boroughs. Proprietors said that the event had an impact on Saturday's sales.

I think it definitely garnered publicity, said Sarah McNally. McNally operates an independent bookstore, McNally Jackson, in New York City, located on 52 Prince Street.  Our sales are up overall.

Thanksgiving Day also proved to be successful for the retail business. Although stores, such as Wal-Mart, were receiving some backlash for opening up Thanksgiving night, forcing their employees to come into work, nearly 28.7 million shopped in stores on and online.

 Consumers are clearly demonstrating their desire to spend this holiday season, but are far from throwing caution to the wind when it comes to how much they will spend on gifts, said Phil Rist, EVP, BIGresearch in a statement. Retailers will have to stick to an aggressive holiday promotion schedule to keep consumers interested.

Cyber Monday was also a big hit. Many stores offered online promotions in order to boost customer sales. About 35 percent logged onto their favorite retailers' websites this Black Friday weekend compared to last year's that saw about 33 percent of shoppers log on.  

With promotions like flash sales that only last an hour or deep discounts on selected lines, shoppers know they can win big on Cyber Monday, said Vicki Cantrell, Executive Director of In addition to putting the finishing touches on their websites, retailers have invested heavily in mobile apps and related content as the appetite for Cyber Monday shopping through smartphones and tablets continues to rise.

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