Adobe Analytics reports online shopping during the holiday season reached a record $108.2 billion, up almost 15 percent from a year earlier. | AP file photo

Cyber Monday is set to break online sales record

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SHARE Cyber Monday is set to break online sales record

Cyber Monday is on track to rack up more online sales than any day in history, but shoppers have already spent billions clicking and buying all week long.

In their hunt for deals on toys, TVs and other items on their wish lists, shoppers were expected to spend $7.8 billion on Cyber Monday, 18.3 percent more than in 2017, according to Adobe Analytics.

The sweet spot will fall between 10 pm and 1 am ET, Adobe says, when it’s anticipated shoppers will spend $1.6 billion–about $200 million more that what retailers would see during a typical whole day any other time of the year.

“Despite some of the best deals coming earlier in the holiday season, the Cyber Monday brand has great staying power,” Taylor Schreiner, director, Adobe Digital Insights said in a statement. “Many shoppers have waited on certain purchases, with three hours tonight expected to bring in as much revenue as an average full day.”

But at a time when shoppers can buy products ranging from dolls to detergent by tapping on a tablet or smart phone, Black Friday and even Thanksgiving are gaining on Cyber Monday to become banner days for online shopping

Retailers saw $6.22 billion in digital sales on Black Friday, 23.6 percent more than last year and the most ever on that day, says Adobe. Meanwhile, Thanksgiving Day experienced the biggest single day surge in online shopping history, leaping 28 percent over the holiday in 2017 to $3.7 billion.

“The whole phenomenon around Cyber Monday was to reflect consumers going back to work, getting high speed connectivity (and) being able to shop more effectively,” says Rob Garf, Salesforce’s vice president of industry strategy and insights. But “with ubiquitous connectivity, mainly through their mobile devices, consumers have more ease and access than ever before, and we’re seeing that shoppers are not just browsing but buying throughout the entire holiday week.”

Smartphones are increasingly the shopping gadget of choice. Mobile sales were expected to total more than $2 billion on Monday, Adobe says. And the more than $1 billion in smart phone sales on Thanksgiving were a new record for that day.

Besides enabling shoppers to make purchases any time, anywhere, shopping via smartphone has also taken off because it’s become simpler and faster.

“It traditionally was a very clunky experience on the phone which distracted consumers from actually purchasing,” Garf says. Now, “the checkout process is a lot smoother than it ever has been, largely because of advanced pay options …like Apple pay and PayPal that allow consumers to go from a five step check out process to a one step checkout process.’’

Cyber Monday is the coda to the long weekend that kicks off the holiday season, a period that is critical to the retail industry which made roughly 20 percent of its annual sales during the last two months of 2017.

Retail sales for this season, not counting cars, gas and restaurants, are expected to rise between 4.3 and 4.8 percent to between roughly $717 billion and $720 billion, according to The National Retail Federation.


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