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Historic Cyber Monday Sending Mixed Signals

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The term Cyber Monday was first used in a Shop.org press release back in November 2005 by Ellen Davis and Scott Silverman, coining the term to encourage people to shop online more. That was long before everyone had access to high-speed internet connection, it was two years before the iPhone was released and one year before Facebook became open to anyone with a valid email address. It just goes to show how fast all-things-cyber can develop in just over a decade. Now, what might have been an off the cuff expression has turned into an internationally recognized day of shopping. Online retailers slash prices and consumers everywhere spend their first day back from a long Thanksgiving weekend basking in the Cyber Monday deals.

Cyber Monday was more of a discovery than a creation. According to the Shop.org/Bizrate Research 2005 eHoliday Mood Study, “77 percent of online retailers said that their sales increased substantially on the Monday after Thanksgiving, a trend that is driving serious online discounts and promotions on Cyber Monday this year (2005).” Something about people returning to their work computers caused a major surge in e-commerce. Online retailers took advantage and soon enough Cyber Monday was the internet equivalent to black Friday.

The 2018 numbers were the highest ever with November 26, 2018, bringing $7.9 billion in cyber sales. Amazon recorded its biggest shopping day in company history, selling 961 items per second. But while at first glance it may seem like Cyber Monday is stronger than ever, some numbers are telling a different story. According to Adobe Analytics, the preceding days over Thanksgiving weekend saw much more substantial growth. November 24th and November 25th saw a 25% growth from the year before compared to the 19.3% for Cyber Monday.

Besides, most of the big online deals are first offered on Thanksgiving and continue to be offered throughout the following week. People don’t have to wait to get back to work on Monday to place online orders anymore. Smartphones allow consumers to buy wherever and whenever they want, and mobile sales are up as much as 50% from 2017. Sales are spreading out over the holiday weekend, and who knows, Cyber Monday might soon be a thing of the past.