This Year's 'Cyber Monday' Expected to be Biggest Online Shopping Day of All Time
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Consumers are scouring the internet for online deals today as retailers offer deals to get people to buy holiday gifts and more over the internet during Cyber Monday, a term coined back in 2005 by the National Retail Federation.
Even though e-commerce is now part and parcel of our everyday lives and much of the holiday shopping season, the annual online shopping event continues to be the biggest online shopping day of the year, thanks to the deals and the hype the industry has created to fuel it.
Adobe Analytics, which tracks online shopping, expects consumers to spend between $12.0 billion and $12.4 billion on Monday, making it the biggest online shopping day of all time.
For several major retailers, the "Cyber Monday" sale is a days-long event that begins over the weekend. Amazon's, for example, kicked off on Saturday and runs through Monday. Target's two-day event began overnight on Sunday, while Walmart kicked off its most recent discounts Sunday evening.
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Consumer spending for Cyber Week — the five major shopping days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday — provides a strong indication of how much shoppers are willing to spend during the holiday season.
Shoppers have been resilient this year in the face of stubbornly high inflation. But consumers are also relying on savings to fuel their shopping and are facing more pressure from credit card debt, which has been on the rise along with delinquencies. They've also been embracing "Buy Now Pay Later" payment plans, which allow shoppers to make payments over time without typically charging interest -- a model analysts believe can make acquiring debt too easy.
The "Buy Now Pay Later" payment plans are also being marketed to consumers as "interest-free loans," according to Fox Business.
But consumers have clearly already increased their holiday shopping habits as they set a record for spending online on Black Friday with nearly $9.8 billion in sales, according to Adobe Analytics.
But in-store sales were sluggish Friday as consumers looked for better deals.
Salesforce's data still showed discount rates rose to 30% in the U.S. on Black Friday, enticing customers to buy.
"Consumers feeling economic pressure are taking control of their household finances and have been really diligent and patient," Rob Garf, vice president and general manager of Retail at Salesforce told the Associated Press.
"They're once again playing a game — and winning the game -- of discount chicken, where they wait for retailers to discount to where they feel most comfortable," he said. "And that's what's happening."
Online purchases are expected to grow just around 1% throughout the entire holiday season, and weaker overall sales could indicate a slowing economy.
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