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Holiday shoppers didn’t totally forgo long lines and early call times on Black Friday, but they did grab their smartphones and iPads to help them navigate to the best destinations, online or off.

Altogether, Black Friday online sales were up 20.7 percent from last year, a phenomena that was largely fueled by the mobile shopping masses.

Sales on mobile devices accounted for 16.3 percent of all online Black Friday sales, up from 9.8 percent in 2011, according to IBM and its cloud-based analytics initiative dubbed “Smarter Commerce.”

Nearly a quarter of U.S. consumers, or 24 percent, opted to visit retailers’ sites using their mobile devices. Most chose the iPad as their digital assistant of choice. Apple’s tablet device generated more traffic than any other single slate or smartphone, and accounted for close to 10 percent of all online shopping traffic, IBM found. Apple’s other popular totable device, the iPhone, was a close second at 8.7 percent.

IBM concluded that consumers used a multiscreen shopping strategy to get the best bargains, meaning they trekked to stores and simultaneously fired up their favorite mobile devices for a hybrid shopping experience. Overall, 58 percent of consumers used smartphones to look for Black Friday deals.

Mobile also totally annihilated social. Shoppers referred by social networks only accounted for .34 percent of all online sales on Black Friday. The figure marked a more than 35 percent drop off from 2011.

For more of IBM’s findings, check out the infographic below.

Photo credit: andrewarchy/Flickr


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