Cy­ber Mon­day gains

Early sales sug­gest a sig­nif­i­cant in­crease over last year’s num­bers

Baltimore Sun - - SPORTS - By Mae An­der­son

NEW YORK — Mil­lions of Amer­i­cans paused dur­ing the Mon­day af­ter Thanks­giv­ing to check out on­line deals and check off peo­ple from their hol­i­day gift list. But so-called Cy­ber Mon­day may be in dan­ger of los­ing its on­line sales ti­tle.

The Mon­day af­ter Thanks­giv­ing is tra­di­tion­ally the busiest on­line shop­ping day of the year, but stores are re­leas­ing in­ter­net deals ear­lier, stretch­ing them through the week, as well as mak­ing them avail­able in stores. Shop­pers l ook­ing for discounts spurred on­line sales on Black Friday to a new high.

Dur­ing the hol­i­day shop­ping week­end that kicks off on Thanks­giv­ing and Black Friday, more and more shop­pers de­cide to skip the may­hem in stores.

Cy­ber Mon­day still packs the big­gest punch in terms of a sin­gle on­line shop­ping day — for now. Shop­pers spent $540 mil­lion be­tween mid­night and 10 a.m. East- ern time Mon­day, af­firm­ing that sales are ex­pected to to­tal $3.36 bil­lion, up 9.4 per­cent from a year ago, ac­cord­ing to an early tally by Adobe Dig­i­tal In­sights, which tracks on­line re­tail trans­ac­tions.

But other days are catch­ing up. Adobe’s fore­cast puts Cy­ber Mon­day neckand-neck with Black Friday, when con­sumers spent $3.34 bil­lion, a 21.6 per­cent jump from last year.

Re­tail­ers rolled out more sales on Mon­day: Ama­zon of­fered $40 off the nor­mally $180 Echo smart speaker and 60 per­cent off a KitchenAid stand mixer, at $220 down from $550. Wal­mart of­fered $100 off a reg­u­larly priced $300 Power Wheels Dis­ney Frozen Jeep Wran­gler mo­tor­ized toy car. And Tar­get of­fered an ex­tra 15 per­cent Sun­day and Mon­day — both on­line and in stores. It of­fered a deal on a Sam­sung 43-inch flat-panel TV for $200 off its reg­u­lar price of $600, plus a $50 gift card with pur­chase.

“The deals are bet­ter to­day than Friday, for sure,” said Michelle Ch­er­ni­coff in Largo, Fla., who picked up an Eye Brush Set half off its reg­u­lar price of $25 at Ulta.com as a gift for her sis­ter. But she said she shops on­line through­out the hol­i­day sea­son for the con­ve­nience more than the one-day-only deals.

“I’m look­ing for at least 30 per­cent off on higher end items I’m pur­chas­ing for my fam­ily,” she said. “I have a huge fam­ily; shop­ping the deals be­tween Black Friday and Cy­ber Mon­day gives me the op­por­tu­nity to buy bet­ter qual­ity items while keep­ing a bud­get.”

On­line sales have also been stretch­ing out more and more. Cartwheel, Tar­get’s dig­i­tal app, started of­fer­ing hol­i­day deals in­clud­ing 50 per­cent off one toy per day Nov. 1. Ama­zon started of­fer­ing 35 days of Black Friday deals Nov. 16. And Wal­mart kicked off its Cy­ber Mon­day deals at 12:01 a.m. EST Friday for the first time as it aimed to grab cus­tomers ahead of its com­peti­tors.

Re­search firm comS­core had pre­dicted on­line spend­ing on Cy­ber Mon­day would jump to $3.5 bil­lion from $3.12 bil­lion last year. The firm’s pre­lim­i­nary hol­i­day shop­ping fore­cast, which in­cludes Novem­ber and De­cem­ber, is for on­line sales to rise as much as 19 per­cent to $81 bil­lion.

GERARD JULIEN/GETTY-AFP

Cy­ber Mon­day still packs the big­gest punch for a sin­gle on­line shop­ping day — for now.

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