Apparently the 24 hours of online buying frenzy during “Cyber Monday” just wasn’t enough for the world’s largest retailer Wal-Mart, so they decided to start on Sunday this year.
Wal-Mart recently announced that for the first time this year, it will offer all of its Cyber Monday deals on the Sunday following Thanksgiving rather than early Monday morning as it has been in the past.
More on Wal-Mart moving Cyber Monday to Sunday
Cyber Monday started over a decade ago when people started using the high-speed Internet access at their workplaces to buy things they did not buy during trips to the shopping mall over the weekend after Thanksgiving (Black Friday weekend).
Today, however, given that Internet access is commonly available, the logic of limiting the mega shopping event to a weekday no longer holds, noted Walmart.com CEO Fernando Madeira.
“The customers have changed but Cyber Monday hasn’t changed with them,” Madeira said in a recent interview. “Now everyone has Internet.”
Of note, the world’s largest retailer began offering ‘teaser’ deals on Sunday in 2014, and this is the first time Wal-Mart will offer all of its Cyber Monday promotions a day earlier. Shoppers can expect to see at least 2,000 online-only specials at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, November 29.
The decision by Wal-Mart to maximize Cyber Monday is another step in the trend of retailers trying to stretch what were once single-day shopping events to capture more sales. Retail industry analysts point out that retailers this year have been promoting their sales for ‘Black Friday‘ – the day after Thanksgiving and traditionally one of the busiest shopping days — for several weeks already.
The expansion of Cyber Monday sales can also be seen as an extension of the major retailers’ battles with Amazon.com, which is much larger than Wal-Mart in e-commerce sales and is growing faster.
Black Friday catching up to Cyber Monday in total sales
Projections from Adobe suggest that Cyber Monday sales in the U.S. will hit $3 billion for the first time in 2015, a solid 12% increase from 2014. Current projections are that Cyber Monday will remain the largest single day for online revenue, but Black Friday is closing the gap, with sales expected to move up around 15% to $2.7 billion.