Cyber Monday – the Online Shopping Festival Day


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Myself . By T.V. Antony Raj

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Cyber Monday (Source: retailmakeoverblog.com)
Cyber Monday (Source: retailmakeoverblog.com)

Black Friday, considered the beginning of the Christmas shopping season has come and gone. Traditionally Black Friday, is one of the busiest shopping days of the year for the brick and mortar retailers who attract customers by providing huge discounts. On that day people in the United States frantically shop for things they do not really need, (Read my article “Black Friday and the United Stupids of America (USA)!“)

Did you miss physical shopping on Black Friday because you are one of those people who tend to stay away from stores to avoid crowds?

Don’t worry. Cyber Monday, considered the biggest and busiest online shopping day of the year in the US is here. This day was created to allow customers like you to shop online from the comfort of their offices and homes. Many online retailers offer deals and large discounts to customers on this day.

Cyber Monday Shopping (Source: webpronews.com)
Cyber Monday Shopping (Source: webpronews.com)

According to the newly formed shopping tradition in the United States, Cyber Monday falls on the first Monday after Thanksgiving Day.

In 2003. Tony Valado, while working at 1800Flowers.com, coined the term “White Wednesday” to be the day before Thanksgiving, for online retailers to offer bargains to online shoppers. However, this suggestion it did not take effect.

According to Scott Silverman, the head of Shop.org, the term was coined in 2004 after a research found the Monday after Thanksgiving was “one of the biggest online shopping days of the year.

During the 2005 holiday shopping season, the term was first used by the ecommerce community.

On November 28, 2005, in the article titled “Cyber Monday, Marketing Myth” published in Bloomberg Businessweek, Robert D. Hof wrote:

Do a Google search on “Cyber Monday,” and you get as many as 779,000 results. Not a bad haul for a term that was created just a week and a half ago to describe the jump in online shopping activity following the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday. While Black Friday is the official kickoff of the traditional retail season, the story goes, online retail really takes off the following Monday.

Michael Barbaro in his article titled “Online sales take off on ‘Cyber Monday” published on November 30, 2005 in the New York Times wrote:

The name Cyber Monday grew out of the observation that millions of otherwise productive working Americans, fresh off a Thanksgiving weekend of window shopping, were returning to high-speed Internet connections at work Monday and buying what they liked.

In an article titled “U.S. Online Holiday Shopping Season Reaches Record $32.6 Billion for November-December Period, Up 12 Percent vs. Year Ago” published on January 5, 2011, comScore reported that consumers spent $1.028 Billion online on Cyber Monday, the highest spending day of 2010:

2010 Holiday Season vs. 2009 Holiday Season*
Non-Travel (Retail) Spending
Excludes Auctions and Large Corporate Purchases
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore, Inc.
Millions ($)
2009 2010 Percent Change
November 1 – December 31 $29,084 $32,589 12%
Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 25) $318 $407 28%
Black Friday (Nov. 26) $595 $648 9%
Cyber Monday (Nov. 29) $887 $1,028 16%
Green Monday (Dec. 13) $854 $954 12%
Free Shipping Day (Dec. 17) $586 $942 61%

*Full season comparison based on calendar days; individual day comparisons 
based on corresponding shopping days in 2009

Top 10 Online Spending Days of 2010 Holiday Season
Non-Travel (Retail) Spending
Excludes Auctions and Large Corporate Purchases
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore, Inc.
Date Spending in Millions ($)
Monday, Nov. 29 (Cyber Monday) $1,028
Monday, Dec. 13 (Green Monday) $954
Monday, Dec. 6 $943
Friday, Dec. 17 (Free Shipping Day) $942
Thursday, Dec. 16 $930
Tuesday, Dec. 14 $913
Tuesday, Nov. 30 $911
Wednesday, Dec. 8 $901
Thursday, Dec. 9 $898
Tuesday, Dec. 7 $880

Cyber Monday is not a public holiday in the United States. Online retailers offer deals, several weeks and days ahead on online forums and websites. A large percentage of the online shopping on this day is done during work hours and many retailers offer extra lunchtime discounts to their customers.

In recent years many online businesses have decided to extend their deals, events, and promotions for at least 5 full business days following Cyber Monday thus creating a “Cyber Week.”

Now, “Cyber Monday” has become an international marketing term used by online retailers in Canada, the United Kingdom, Portugal, Germany, Chile, Colombia, Ireland, and Japan.

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2 thoughts on “Cyber Monday – the Online Shopping Festival Day”

  1. I agree that Cyber Monday has been one of the most popular days for online buyers. But I am told that it is very difficult to enter the shopping sites and compelete the transactions on that day, as only limited stocks are available for purchase.

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