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article image'Cyber Monday' Marketing Ploy Now a Reality As Consumers Swarm Online to Shop

By David Silverberg     Nov 26, 2007 in Internet
Cyber Monday isn’t just a cool name for the day when consumers shop at online retailers in droves. It’s become a real trend, so much so that employers could also bleed millions in lost productivity as staff spends work time shopping online.
Digital Journal — A tradition since online retail took hold, Cyber Monday refers to the first Monday after Thanksgiving when online shoppers spend millions for the holidays. At first blush, the skeptic may wonder if the moniker truly reflects the trend. According to a recent survey, it does — 32 per cent of adult said they would shop online on Cyber Monday, up from 27 per cent in 2006, found.
Also, these shoppers can generate $700 million in online retail sales, a 21 per cent boost over the $608 million of sales last year on Cyber Monday.
This good news for e-merchants comes on the heels of a very busy online shopping day on Black Friday last week. ComScore Networks, which tracks Internet spending, said Friday’s online sales rose 22 per cent to $531 million on the day after Thanksgiving, compared with the same day a year ago. ComScore expected online sales Monday to top $700-million as well.
As much as Cyber Monday has become a real trend putting a wide grin on retailers’ faces, it may also cause some disruption in the workplace. According to job placement firm Challenger Gray & Christmas Inc. of Chicago, employers could lose $488 million in productivity because staff will purchase books, gadgets, video games and other items while at work. But bosses shouldn’t be freaking out yet.
John Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger Gray, told the Globe & Mail:
Unless online shopping causes deadlines to be missed or Internet performance to suffer, companies should not attempt to crack down on the practice. Doing so could negatively affect morale and loyalty, which ultimately will have a greater impact on the bottom line than a few minutes of cyber shopping.Cyber Monday may be a busy shopping day but, as Scott Krugman, spokesman for the National Retail Federation, told ABC News, the Saturday before Christmas is the most frenzied gift-buying day:
We're a nation of procrastinators. No matter how good Black Friday is, it's going to be the week before and the week after Christmas that tells the tale for the industry. That's where the big bulk of the spending occurs.
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