Cyber Monday record could be beat before holiday shopping ends

Tribune News Service • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:52 AM

With shoppers now clearly accustomed to buying online and retailers used to offering online deals, Longboard Media CEO Jim Barkow said there could be another day or two in December that exceed Monday's record-setting online sales.

"This year is fantastic, and it's possible that a few days could surpass Cyber Monday," Barkow said. "There are more deals to come and people are buying more online. It's a combination of those very simple factors."

Lelah Manz, chief strategist for commerce at Akamai Technologies, was a bit more cautious about whether any single shopping day can beat Cyber Monday sales this year.

"Cyber Monday the last two years has been the biggest day of the season for online sales," she said. "However, we may see a series of back-to-back days that drive far more sales than this past Thanksgiving weekend in aggregate. The week before Christmas, including Free Shipping Day, has the potential to be the heaviest week of the online shopping season."

Akamai found that online traffic peaked at 9 p.m. Monday with a record-breaking 8.5 million page views per minute. Cyber Monday purchasing raced past a typical fall day by 193 percent and beat Black Friday online sales by 49 percent, according to Akamai.

Cyber Monday sales grew 30.3 percent over last year, according to data released Tuesday by IBM, As of midnight Monday, online sales were up more than 36 percent compared with online shopping on Black Friday.

The research firm comScore had forecast this month that Cyber Monday would represent the biggest online shopping day ever, with sales likely to exceed $1.5 billion. But comScore officials did not respond to requests for comment this week.

While IBM believes that online shoppers prefer to use PCs and laptops, it found that more than 18 percent of consumers used a mobile device to visit a retail site, up more than 70 percent from 2011.

Sales on mobile devices were nearly 13 percent of all online purchases, representing an increase of more than 96 percent over 2011.

Of shoppers using handheld devices, 58.1 percent used smartphones, compared with 41.9 percent who used tablets.

— By Dan Nakaso, San Jose Mercury News (MCT)

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