Cyber Monday

Baker, John JMB at STRADLEY.COM
Mon Nov 28 20:17:14 UTC 2005


        Today is Cyber Monday, the day after Thanksgiving, supposedly significant for on-line retailers.  Barry has already posted about this new retailing holiday, which came out of nowhere and suddenly is all over the news.  Just where was the nowhere it came out of?  The earliest references on Westlaw all cite Shop.org, an on-line retailers association that is a division of the National Retail Federation.  Those earliest references are just from a week ago, November 21, except for one November 19 story in The New York Times; apparently the Times got an early look at the Shop.org press release, http://shop.org/press/05/112105.asp.  Just in case Cyber Monday catches on, I've reproduced the press release below for posterity.


John Baker


"Cyber Monday" Quickly Becoming One of the Biggest
Online Shopping Days of the Year
-- Online Retailers Also Going All Out for Thanksgiving--

Washington, DC, November 21, 2005-While traditional retailers will be monitoring store traffic and sales on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving), online retailers have set their sights on something different: Cyber Monday, the Monday after Thanksgiving, which is quickly becoming one of the biggest online shopping days of the year. For the past few years, online retailers have found that sales on the Monday after Thanksgiving have been creeping higher, giving retailers an additional reason to be jolly during the ceremonial kickoff to the holiday season. According to the Shop.org/BizRate Research 2005 eHoliday Mood Study , 77 percent of online retailers said that their sales increased substantially last year on the Monday after Thanksgiving, a trend that is driving serious online discounts and promotions on Cyber Monday this year.

"On Cyber Monday, consumers set their sights on surfing for holiday gifts and shopping online," said Scott Silverman, Executive Director of Shop.org. "This year, online retailers will be capitalizing on the increased traffic by offering special promotions and discounts."

Experts believe that an increase in web traffic could stem from the fact that consumers may have faster or more secure Internet connections at work and choose to shop there, or that they were unable to finish all of their shopping over the Thanksgiving weekend. Analysts also expect many consumers to shop on Cyber Monday from home after work or when their children are sleeping. Regardless of the reason or the time of day, consumers are expected to head online in droves on Cyber Monday, many during work hours.

According to a recent Shop.org survey, conducted by BIGresearch, more than one third of consumers (37%), or 51.7 million people, said they will use Internet access at work to browse or buy gifts online this holiday season. The survey found that more than half of young adults 18-24 (51%) and nearly half of those 25-34 (49%) will be shopping online during work hours. The survey also found that men (42%) are more likely than women (32%) to shop at the office.

Online retailers will be ready for the surge in sales, and many are offering extra incentives to encourage people to shop online. According to the eHoliday Mood Study , 43 percent of online retailers plan to offer special promotions and discounts on Cyber Monday. Deals will range from free shipping to gifts with purchase to percentages off.

According to the survey, the biggest Cyber Monday winners last year were jewelry/luxury retailers, with 89 percent of websites seeing substantial increases in sales, and consumer electronics retailers at 86 percent. Retailers who offer food, beverages, or other gourmet items (83%) and furniture and home d├ęcor (80%) also saw above-average sales surges.

Online Retailers Going All Out for Thanksgiving

Online retailers are also planning for large-scale promotions on Thanksgiving Day, when most retail stores will be closed. The survey found that 36 percent of online retailers will be offering special promotions and sales on Thanksgiving Day. Some will even be offering their Black Friday discounts one day early on their websites.

"Once the parades have ended and the leftovers are put away, many consumers will find a few precious hours to get a jump-start on the holidays by shopping online," said Chuck Davis, Chairman of Shopzilla. "This year, retailers will be reminding shoppers that even though their stores may be closed, their websites are always open."

According to results released last month, all of the companies surveyed expect to see online sales increases from 2004. Some retailers are expecting big gains, with 57 percent of online retailers expecting holiday sales to increase by 30% or more compared to last year. One in five online retailers are will experience hyper growth with sales of 75% or higher.

About the Survey

The Shop.org/BizRate Research 2005 eHoliday Mood Study is the only holiday measurement tool that is based on data provided directly from online retailers in addition to consumer data. The Shop.org/BizRate Research eHoliday Mood Study, conducted by BizRate Research, a division of Shopzilla was designed to gauge consumer behavior and online retailers' success during the winter holiday season. The poll of 1,891 online buyers (defined as anyone who has made an online purchase in the last twelve months) and 119 online retailers, all members of Shop.org, was conducted September 23-26, 2005. The survey on consumers shopping at work was conducted for Shop.org by BIGresearch from November 2-9, 2005. The consumer poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.0 percent.

BIGresearch is a consumer market intelligence firm that provides unique consumer insights that are gathered online utilizing very large sample sizes. BIGresearch's syndicated Consumer Intentions and Actions survey monitors the pulse of more than 7,000 consumers each month to empower its clients with unique insights for identifying opportunities in a fragmented and changing marketplace.

Shopzilla, formerly BizRate.com, is the most powerful and easiest-to-use shopping search site on the Web. With an index of more than 30 million products from more than 55,000 stores, Shopzilla uses ShopRank, a proprietary patent-pending algorithm, to help shoppers instantly find virtually anything on sale from anyone, anywhere on the Web at the best price. Shopzilla also features powerful comparison tools and BizRate consumer reviews of stores and products, the Web's largest and most trusted consumer feedback network. Every week Shopzilla prepares millions of shoppers to make smarter, more confident purchases and sends them directly to the checkout page of thousands of online merchants. Shopzilla also operates the BizRate consumer feedback network with more than 2.5 million members and about 1 million fresh reviews per month. Shopzilla powers shopping search for many of the Web's largest consumer sites including AOL, Lycos, Time Warner's RoadRunner, and many others. Founded !
 in 1996, the Los Angeles-based company also operates sites in the United Kingdom, France, and Germany. Shopzilla is owned by The E.W. Scripps Company (NYSE: SSP - News ), a diverse media concern with interests in national television networks, newspaper publishing, broadcast television stations, TV retailing and licensing and syndication. For more information, visit www.shopzilla.com, the smarter way to shop.

Shop.org , the association for retailers online, is where the best retail minds come together to gain the insight, knowledge and intelligence to make smarter, more informed decisions in the evolving world of the Internet and Multi-Channel retailing. Founded in 1996, Shop.org became a division of the National Retail Federation in January 2001. The association's membership includes interactive executives from store-based retailers, catalog-based retailers, Web-based retailers, and retail solution providers.

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