cyber-monday-mark-f-simmonsToday is Cyber Monday, the granddaddy of all online sales days and according to NBC, over 131 million people are expected to shop online.  Cyber Monday is supposed to be the “kickoff” to the Holiday online sales season. Is it? I honestly can’t tell anymore. Between Black Friday getting extended from one day to more like three or four weeks and the abundance of online “Black Friday” deals, the line has been blurred.

Keep reading as I discuss further.

Black Friday is now unrecognizable

Black Friday was supposed to be the day after Thanksgiving. One day for deep discounts and to kickoff the Holiday shopping season. At least, that’s how it started out. Over time, we’ve seen the one day shift to two days and stores like Walmart and Best Buy opening up on Thanksgiving Day. This, of course, does not go over well with the employees of these retailers as they have to leave their families to report to work on a day that’s supposed to be all about family. We’ve also witnessed just how crazy people can get over a $99 TV, but that’s not the focus of this post.

We’ve also started to see the Black Friday sales start earlier this year. They also last the entire weekend. Instead of focusing on one, solitary day, Black Friday has become a season unto itself. This may be beneficial to retailers, but it’s wreaking havoc on consumers searching for the best deal. It almost becomes a game of chance to predict when you’ll get the best price.

The most important change in Black Friday protocol has been the shift to online. The original focus was on the brick and mortar stores. I can’t recall when it was just about the stores. Now, it’s online as well and retailers are simply covering their bases. The problem this creates ultimately impacts Cyber Monday.

What does this mean for Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday was created to showcase online retailers, giving them a focal point for the early Holiday shopping season. Since Black  Friday drove customers to the stores, Cyber Monday would capture the online shoppers. Or at least that has been the plan. Now that Black Friday is both inclusive of internet shopping and lasts for such a long time, where does that leave Cyber Monday?

In my opinion, it leaves Cyber Monday in big trouble. Think about it this way. If shoppers are taking advantage of the many Black Friday deals that last from October to the Sunday after Thanksgiving, will they have money left over to shop on Cyber Monday? What about incentive? The Black Friday deals are so rich that it makes it that much tougher for Cyber Monday sales to compete. The “special” nature of Cyber Monday is getting diluted. Will retailers start to offer incredibly deep discounts just to move merchandise?

My opinion aside,  according to NBC, an NRF survey of 4,500 shoppers revealed spending over the Thanksgiving weekend is expected to have declined 2.9 percent and that $57.4 billion was spent by 141 million unique shoppers this Thanksgiving weekend

NBC discusses Cyber Monday in this brief video:

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

 

Looking Ahead

I think that in the next two to three years, we’ll see a huge shift in how Cyber Monday is perceived and taken advantage of. I for one did my major shopping during the Black Friday sales. I got some good deals and I’m done. I’m not even paying much attention to the ads today because I’m not looking to spend any more money. I’m not saying I’m the rule, but I think it’s a safe assumption that I’m not the only one.

As for Cyber Monday’s future? Only time will tell. It’s not like the two are working in tandem. In my view, they are competitors and Black Friday is succeeding in putting Cyber Monday out of business.

More On The Subject

Check out a related articles Black Friday Is Coming! Wait…It’s Been Here For Weeks. What About Cyber Monday? and How Small Business Saturday Is Bad For The Local Economy for more on the subject.

What are your thoughts on the subject? Share in the comments below.

 

Yours in success,

MFS

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I’m currently working on a comprehensive Twitter e-guide “The Twitter Master Guide.”  This will address the most common issues people have with Twitter and how to effectively manage the profile to grow your community, extend your voice and generate revenue. There will also be a few free bonuses – including the “Master Guide to Twitter Advertising” and “How To Use Twitter for Customer Service” – to accompany the main guide which we be sold for less than $50. Five lucky newsletter subscribers will get a free copy to evaluate. Stay tuned….