Monday, December 03, 2012

Three days hit $1 billion in online spending as Cyber Monday becomes Cyber Week

Many retailers were advertising deals not just for Cyber Monday, but for Cyber Week, running promotions the entire week. They weren't kidding: a comScore report issued on Sunday showed that it was indeed a week full of online retailer joy.

comScore's figures showed that Cyber Monday led the way with $1.46 billion -- a 17 percent rise over 2011 and a new record for a single-day of online spending. There was, though, there was no doubt it was Cyber Week as two other days also eclipsed $1 billion in online spending.

Tuesday, November 27 reached $1.26 billion. That day also became the second heaviest spending day in history, trailing only Cyber Monday 2012, and slightly outpacing Cyber Monday 2011. Meanwhile, Wednesday, November 28 reached $1.11 billion.

For the week, Nov. 26 - Nov. 30, spending reached 5.462 billion, averaging over $1 billion per day. That was 11 percent better than 2011, when spending was $4.928 billion.

Other tidbits of data from online spending, thus far, in the holiday shopping season. On Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 22), sales reached $633 million, 32 percent up from 2011's $479 million. On Black Friday (Nov. 23), spending reached $1 billion in 2012 ($1.042 billion) vs. 2011's $816 million, up 28 percent.

During Thanksgiving weekend, (Nov. 24-25), online sales reached $1.187 billion, vs. 2011's $1.031 billion, a rise of 15 percent.

comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni said:
Cyber Monday kicked off Cyber Week with a record spending total of $1.46 billion, but the ‘sugar high’ appears to be somewhat short-lived. While we still saw three billion dollar days this week, growth rates dampened following the peak demand of the Thanksgiving-to-Cyber Monday promotional period. This is a similar pattern to what we observed last year.

In addition, unseasonably warm weather throughout many parts of the country may have given consumers some added impetus to shop in-store rather than rely on online shopping.
In other words, global climate change (nee global warming) has an adverse effect on online shopping.

Free shipping though, continues to be important to consumers when choosing online shopping as opposed to in-store shopping. Fulgoni added:
Though retailers must often sacrifice margins when they provide free shipping, they benefit because consumers tend to spend significantly more on those transactions. Consumers may either be responding to the minimum spending thresholds needed in order to receive free shipping, or figure that as long as they know they’re receiving free shipping it might be worth adding another item or two to their shopping basket.
There are still more than three weeks left before Christmas, and that means a lot of time for in-store -- and online -- holiday shopping.

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