History Is Being Made Today

Cyber Monday: What Is It?

For years and years and years, Black Friday which is always the day after Thanksgiving was the biggest shopping day of the year for Americans. Retailers give major discounts on their products and the consumers capitalize on it just in time to get their holiday shopping done. On November 28th, 2005 (exactly 11 years ago today), when 77% of surveyed retailers stated that their online sales substantially increased on the following Monday after Black Friday, the National Retail Federation coined the term “Cyber Monday”. It is believed that the primary reason this happened is because so many Americans only had access to high speed internet at work at this time so they had to wait until the following Monday for access to the remnants of the Black Friday online sales.

Growth In Recent Years

At first, Cyber Monday wasn’t even considered to be in the top 10 busiest online shopping days of the year but in recent years it has become the number one online shopping  day of the year for Americans. It has now surpassed Black Friday for the top-ranking online shopping day of the year for Americans.

In 2016, Black Friday online sales jumped 21.6% from last year. the largest year over year increase in history compared to only a 9.4% projected growth rate for Cyber Monday. Black Friday generated $3.34  billion in online sales this year, another new record surpassing $3 billion for the first time. Mobile sales also hit record-highs with over $1 billion in sales. In the Federation’s survey, 36% of the respondents said that 100% of the goods they purchased online over this past weekend were on sale.

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Despite the success of Black Friday, analysts say that Cyber Monday is still anticipated to beat it and generate $3.36 billion in online sales this year but not by much. This is the most online sales revenue to ever be generated in a single day. If the Year to Year growth rates are similar next year as to this year, Black Friday may be able to reclaim the title of the biggest online shopping day of the year. Mentions of Cyber Monday on social media are down as well by a whopping 80%.

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Apps

Some things to know about apps before doing your Black Friday or Cyber Monday shopping

Store-Specific Apps

Companies like Target and Wal Mart have developed features in their apps to assist their Black Friday and Cyber Monday shoppers. These features include being able to see what the “Daily Discounts” are at each of their store locations, whether on not the item is in stock, a barcode scanner to be able to quickly find information on a product you’ve found in the store, looking up the location of a specific product inside the selected store amongst many other features.

 

Tools

ShopSavvy

ShopSavvy allows users to scan the barcode of products, compare the price of this product at other stores in your area, and even subscribe for product notifications for any price changes on the product in your area or online. It also allows users to compare all the different deals at their favorite stores.

Christmas Gift List (Android) or Santa’s Bag (iOS)

Cyber Monday and Black Friday are both great times to get your christmas shopping done. These apps have a variety of features that will allow users to go through the stressful process of holiday shopping with a much more organized approach. The user can set a budget for how much the user wants to spend for the season, count how many days there are until Christmas, make a profile for everyone that is getting present(s), how much money the user is going to spend on each person, organize what presents have already been bought for each person, how much they still have left in their budget for that person, and even keep of whether or not the gift has been wrapped. I highly recommend this for Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping.

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Beware of Fake Apps

In recent weeks there have been a slew of fake apps that are have gotten passed Apple’s screening process that are tricking users into believing that they are using apps for real companies anywhere from Diore to Overstock.com. The apps look legit head to toe for the most part, they’ll even give the user a “thank you” when they check out your cart and give the user a fake number for tracking their shipping. The user will get charged and then the goods will just never get delivered. Some of them even contain Malware that can lock the user’s phone until they pay a ransom. A lot of these fake apps are believed to be coming from China. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Ownership-A perfect example of this is on a fake Overstock app that was taken down. In the app store, the fake app will say the app is owned by “Overstock Inc.” when the real one will say owned by “Overstock.com”, they’re very similar so look into both companies if there are two apps.
  • Ratings and Reviews-Two things to keep in mind: quantity and quality. If the app has 10,000 ratings and a 4-star average you’re probably okay. If the app doesn’t have a lot of ratings and it averages out to anything below 3 stars, I would be recommend being a little cautious.
  • Dates-Check to see when the app was added to the app store, the more recent it is the more likely it is to be fake.
  • Links-Check to see the link that the app is giving you to the supposed website is actually going to the real website and not some knock-off with a similar name such “nordstromrackdeals.com rather than just “nordstromrack.com”. It’s best to go to the real website first and follow the link from that website to the app store.

 

 

7 comments

  1. jagpalsingh03 · ·

    Great post! The relationship between Cyber Monday and Black Friday is a great representation of how society has moved towards digital and how companies have adapted. Like you said, a few years ago, Cyber Monday was just a normal Monday. But as people have grown accustomed to shopping online and would rather buy products from the comfort of their house, Cyber Monday has rivaled the craze of Black Friday. It goes to show you how pervasive the digital space has been over the last decade. On the other hand, it is interesting that mentions of Cyber Monday are down 80%. I would have never expected that but I think that can be attributed to the fact that “Black Friday” is bigger than a shopping day. It’s a cultural phenomenon and when people discuss Black Friday, they often lump the subsequent weekend and Monday into the term. It’s also “fitting,” given the political climate, that shoppers now have to be wary of fake apps. I think the rise of false information on the internet will give online shoppers pause this season but moving forward, I anticipate that Cyber Monday shopping will continue to outpace Black Friday shopping.

  2. I like the focus on the apps for cyber Monday. Of course, I think it’s a totally pointless day (becuase you can order online just as easily on Friday), but who am I to kill some good hype?

  3. polmankevin · ·

    Nice post! I like how you talked about the history of Black Friday and Cyber Monday before starting your analysis. I didn’t know that Cyber Monday initially started because people didn’t have great internet connections at home. Obviously, this isn’t as impactful today with improved internet access and a more competitive online retail market. I liked the examples of apps that you provided. Santa’s Bag sounds like a perfect tool to help users organize and execute their holiday shopping. Similarly, fake apps represent a serious threat to the mobile retail market.

  4. Great post! I think all of the trends that you mentioned really point towards a digital future, especially the unexpected rise of Cyber Monday. I think the most interesting thing is the success of Black Friday. Personally, Black Friday seemed very underwhelming this year in terms of deals and I would assume a lot of the increase has to do with the increase of disposable income. As the years go buy, people will be buying more online on black friday, increasing the amount able to be purchased (large warehouses) and getting those wary people who dislike the black friday shopping mobs.

  5. Great post! I’ve been paying a lot more attention to Cyber Monday this year. One reason why explicit “Cyber Monday” references may have dipped is that a lot of retailers seem to be doing “Cyber Weekend” or “Cyber Week.” This spreads out the hype over a few days and prevents sites from crashing due to overwhelming traffic on a single day. It seems like a good idea, as it basically combines and stretches out Cyber Monday and Black Friday! And all from the comfort of your own home. Can’t beat that!

  6. mikeknoll98 · ·

    This was my first year participating in Cyber Monday. While I always took advantage of online deals during this time, I never specifically looked out for this day. I think this is large in part to do with this course, all of the talk in class and on the twitter feed has my mind thinking about tech more and naturally the internet. I really enjoyed your analysis of Cyber Monday and some of the potential traps users fall into. Thanks for the post and great job.

  7. I like how you included the “Fake Apps” section, as my one of my roommates actually texted me the other day saying that she had found a site that sold Yeezys at a really discounted price. The shoes were definitely fake, but the site looked almost identical to the Adidas one and, since it was Cyber Monday, such a deal was almost feasible. I have to say that apps can be really useful for mobile shopping, but I still do the majority of digital shopping on a computer. I don’t know many people who buy frequently from their phones, but the trend seems to suggest that this habit will only increase in the future.

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