It was just about thirteen years ago that companies rolled out the very first post-Thanksgiving weekend online sales bonanza. The Monday after the holiday had never been a big sales day, but by 2008 more than 80% of online retailers were participating in the new event. In 2010, what was now called Cyber Monday was showing over $1 billion in a single day of sales.
The world has changed since then—but by how much? In the spirit of a post-Thanksgiving turkey-and-wine hangover, here are some quick Cyber Monday trends that you might take note of for this year and in the years to come.
Cyber Sales Growth Rate Is Speeding Up
Initially, the sales total for Cyber Monday took 3–4 years to double up. But with nearly $3.5 billion in sales recorded for 2016, sales almost doubled by the next year with 2017 racking up over $6.5 billion. This year sales may more than double, who knows. Either way, there’s no indication that 2018 won’t see a consistent trend. And what does that mean for shoppers? Traffic. Overwhelmed sales portals. Waits, slow service, crashed websites. So get online as early as possible and start packing your digital shopping cart.
The Most Popular Retailers Are Brick-and-Mortars
Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Target, Kohl’s, Macy’s, and Old Navy are already among the most popular sites for Cyber Monday. Amazon is in that group, too, of course, but it’s worth noting that Amazon has also been opening it’s own brick-and mortars. In fact, the trend toward physical stores and IRL shopping continues apace, with unknown implications for the future of online dealers. If this topic interests you, stay tuned because our own Judi Friedman will be writing a new piece for Insights about the newfound popularity of old-timey things, like storefronts and traditional mailer marketing.
Cyber Monday Is Spreading
Heard of Cyber Week? It’s the new game in town. But it’s no wonder. With the near-universal accessibility of mobile devices, Cyber Monday may no longer be enough for sales-hungry consumers. Sales over the entire Thanksgiving weekend regularly beats out Cyber Monday by itself, with over $13 billion in digital sales between November 23–26 last year. Predictably, companies love the idea of having Cyber Monday every day. And with phones making purchases easier and easier, and automation making it unnecessary to staff salespeople over the holiday period, Cyber Monday could conceivably spread even further, beyond one puny little week.
Mobile Sales On the Rise
Mobile sales on the big day for last were 12% higher than the year before. And why wouldn’t it be so, with sales by mobile phone getting easier, faster, cheaper? Plus, hastily making a purchase on your way to the bathroom reduces the hassle of thinking it through before placing your order. That ease and convenience has caused many observers to say that 2018 mobile sales will outpace all previous years, plus a bump from all the extra sales made on other handheld non-laptop devices.
Go Omnichannel or Go Home
So much sales are happening online, but don’t forget about the real world. In-store experience is more important then ever, actually. Consumers want integrated shopping. If it’s available online, they want you to have it in store. Connected spenders use the internet to explore retailers and brands. So for Cyber Monday this year, prepare to see more robust and successful integration of on- and offline services and products, which is wise of companies since doing so means higher sales.