What is Cyber Monday and Black Friday?

Black Friday

This one you've probably heard of before... it's the day after American Thanksgiving. It marks the beginning of the Christmas shopping season. Many brick-and-mortar stores open up early and offer wild deals that are similar to, or even bigger than "Boxing Day" sales which you may be familiar with. The left side of the cartoon accurately depicts the chaos often found in stores on Black Friday.

Cyber Monday

This is the Monday immediately following Black Friday. Cyber Monday works on the same principle as Black Friday, except that it occurs online only. See the right side of the cartoon above? That's Cyber Monday. Ecommerce stores (like most of the stores on Shopify) offer amazing deals that customers can take advantage of in the comfort of their own home.

In 2005, Shop.org coined the term “Cyber Monday” after analyzing increased Internet traffic and sales on the first day that most people return to work after the holiday weekend.

Since its inception, online consumers have started to spread the word about Cyber Monday. Between 2006 and 2011, online sales doubled to over 1.2 billion dollars on Cyber Monday. The success of Cyber Monday has made itself known all around the world, including Canada, the United Kingdom, and all over Europe.

Many online retailers have taken advantage of this upsurge in consumer spending by offering discounts, incentives, savings options, and free shipping. Shop.org originally coined “Cyber Monday” as a marketing term to promote business on an already busy day. Online retail stores have not limited their sales and discounts only for Cyber Monday; however, they certainly have started to capitalize on its popularity by marketing early in the season. While Cyber Monday offers unbeatable discounts, online retailers will still promote sales throughout the holiday season.

Online retailers promote Cyber Monday using a variety of Internet marketing strategies, including smart phone advertisements. Comparison shoppers with smart phones connected to the Internet can easily find the hottest deals with the press of a button. Many online retailers have apps that allow smart phone users to look up products in their store. As a result, the buyer has an opportunity to explore other online stores for steeper bargains. In addition, this breeds fierce competition that grants online shoppers discounts not found in brick-and-mortar stores on Black Friday.

The Internet serves as more than a sales channel. In fact, many consumers use the Internet to research products before they go out to buy them at brick-and-mortar stores. As a result, major retailers have established an online presence simply as a marketing tool for in-store bargains. The same concept applies on Cyber Monday for online shoppers who simply want to peruse catalogs in hopes of purchasing items later. In-store consumers may also seek out deals for items that they could not purchase on Black Friday. Other consumers may want to look and feel the product upfront before they purchase on the Internet on Cyber Monday. Many retailers promote online sales in their brick-and-mortar stores, and in-store sales on their business websites. Retailers have sent email coupons to promote online and in-store deals through newsletters. Email coupons contain special codes redeemable at the time of purchase. Retailers may also use QR codes for online shoppers to use while shopping in their brick-and-mortar stores.

Follow these links to learn more about Cyber Monday: