Cyber Monday is the industrial term given to the Monday following the Thanksgiving weekend. It all started in 2005 when the Shop.org press release stated that ‘Cyber Monday’ was quickly becoming one of the busiest online shopping days of the year. According to research, this proliferation of online transaction is a result of the extensive sales promotion and discounts offered before and after Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday. Following the declaration of the particular Monday as one of the “Biggest Online Shopping Days”, in 2006, Shop.org launched its CyberMonday.com portal, a treasure trove of Cyber Monday deals.
Although in inception, Cyber Monday was restricted to USA, it has now become an international phenomenon, affecting online retailers in Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, Chile and Portugal. In fact, it is believed that shoppers in UK have spent a staggering £19 million every hour on Cyber Monday this year. The total expenditure accounts to over £456 in 24 hours. The rise in the outlay was 14 per cent more than last year’s spend.
The term “Cyber Monday” was first coined by Shop.org and was used in ecommerce during the 2005 Christmas holiday shopping season. According to Shop.org head Scott Silverman, it was based on research from 2004 that conclusively proved the Monday following Black Friday (the Friday after Thanksgiving Day, unofficially marking the start of Christmas shopping season) was the twelfth biggest online shopping day. In fact, according to retailers, the period between 5th of December and 15th was the busiest online shopping periods of the year. It was observed that after window-shopping throughout the Thanksgiving weekend, shoppers to the internet the following Monday to buy what they had liked.
In the United States, around 600 retailers offered discounts and sales in the official Cyber Monday website, created by Shop.org. Keeping in par with the spirit of Thanksgiving and Christmas, a percentage of the profit goes to the Ray M. Greenly Scholarship Fund which benefits students who want an education in ecommerce. According to comScore data, Cyber Monday has been growing in leaps and bounds since 2006, growing 25% that year, 21% in 2007 and 18% in 2008. Of the transactions, a majority of it is made from work computers, while home computers come close and a small percentage is even made from international locations.
In Canada, a National Post article stated that a number of Canadian retailers were hosting Cyber Mondays of their own. US television broadcasts that emphasize the growth of Cyber Monday sales have triggered a widespread observation of this busy online shopping day in Canada. In fact, US retailers have also made considerable business across Canada. This is somewhat facilitated by the parity of US and Canadian dollar. In Germany, Amazon.de observed the country’s first Cyber Monday in 2010, France had its first Cyber Monday in 2008 while New Zealand had its first Cyber Monday courtesy online retailer Belly Beyond in 2010 as well.
In an age of tech savvy customers and retailers, online business has become an important part of commerce and Cyber Monday only emphasizes the trend.