The History and Future of Cyber Monday

Right now, in this very moment, millions of Americans are spending millions – make that billions –  of dollars shopping online. Why today? It’s Cyber Monday!!

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Sometimes America really nails a good idea, like the telephone, or sliced bread, or the ability to take advantage of Black Friday sales from the comfort of your own home. After all, why get trampled over an iPad when you can get it for 40% off with free shipping while laying in bed??

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In The Beginning: 2005

Remember when people said “cyber” more? It was the early 2000s, right around the time that Ellen Davis coined the term “Cyber Monday’ in a press release for Shop.org (part of the National Retail Federation) titled, “Cyber Monday Quickly Becoming One of the Biggest Online Shopping Days of the Year.”

When you look back at the digital landscape of America at the time, the surge in online shopping makes total sense.

Back in 2005, Facebook was still only available to a select audience, YouTube had just been founded, no one had an iPhone yet, and many people only had access to high-speed internet at work. This meant that after a long weekend, people coming back to the office were also coming back to fast internet access . . . making early Christmas shopping all the more enticing.

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As internet access has continued to rise, retailers have caught onto the trend of online shopping, particularly post-Thanksgiving/pre-Christmas, and continue to increase sales and buzz around the newly-named holiday.

Year Over Yaaasss: 2006-2010

In 2006, sales rose 25% on Cyber Monday, and then another 20% in 2007…and so on and so on, gaining an estimated $100 million dollars each year in sales.

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Billion with a B: 2010-2016

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A billion dollars.

In 2010, consumers hit that billion dollar mark, and officially fulfilled that 2005 headline by becoming the busiest shopping day of the year. This trend continued, with 2015 busting into the $3 billion territory.

Today, consumers are expected to spend an estimated $3.36 billion, a 9.4% increase since last year.

What’s Next?

Basically, Cyber Monday is the new Black Friday, and you don’t have to be a retailer to get on board. Here are a few tips on how to capitalize on this digital shopping craze:

>>The Early Bird Gets The Worm.

Monday morning is the prime time to reach them.

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75% of Cyber Monday shoppers go at it first thing in the morning, 25% shop during lunch, 34% once they get home, and only 19% continue throughout the week. And don’t think people aren’t shopping at work: 95% of employed consumers do a little browsing during office hours.

>>Go Big or Go Home

90% of retailers participate in Cyber Monday, so if you thought it was important to stand out before, it’s even more important on the Monday after Thanksgiving. Here’s how to make attention-grabbing content that’s shareable.

>>Be A Social Butterfly

Make sure your Facebook page is part of the strategy. One third of shoppers say they make sure to check out a company’s Facebook page to learn more about offers.

>>Mobile Friendly Matters

184.2 million people are spending 25% of their time on smartphones every day. 29.6 million of today’s consumers will be filling their online shopping carts on their phone. So make it easy for consumers to engage with you. If your website isn’t mobile responsive, your consumers won’t be responsive.

>>Get To Know The Millennials

Millennials are the largest growing population in the workforce and in the country, so it’s important to know where, why, and how they are spending their money. Here are some tips on marketing to millennials.

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Whatever the future holds for Cyber Monday, we know it is worth paying attention to. It may only be one day a year, but it has proven to be a representation of growing trends in consumer behavior. So take a moment to listen to your audience today, because whatever grabs their attention on the busiest shopping day of the year will likely hold weight for the next 364 days as well.