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What is Cyber Monday and should I care?

You may well have heard of Cyber Monday and may even have read some media coverage in the last couple of days but what's it all about?

What is Cyber Monday?

The term Cyber Monday was first used on 28th November 2005 in a press release from Shop.org - where it claimed that the Monday following Thanks Giving was rapidly becoming the busiest day of the year for ordering items online (This year that is the 3rd December). Since then it has become firmly established as the biggest trading day of the year for internet companies. This trend, although founded in relationship to the Thanks Giving holiday in the US, is now true for the UK along with many other countries across the globe.

Linked with the Christmas period of gift buying, it is often the consequence of 'window shopping' at the weekend and then finding the desired item cheaper online on the Monday. Interestingly, more and more companies are restricting employee's abilities to use the internet for non-work related reasons but this does not seem to have stopped this growing trend; with those facing such restrictions turning to personal mobile devices or waiting until the evening to place their order. The growth in online shopping in general remains strong as people face more difficult financial circumstances and look to the internet to provide a more affordable way to buy essentials (and non-essentials) to spread their money further. It may well be a bumper Monday for those involved in online sales!

Should I care?

On the surface of it, if you are not involved in an online business in an occupational sense, there would seem little to care about. However, Cyber Monday often results in some companies running out of stock of certain items, particularly the must have gadget or toy for Christmas 2012. This frequently leads to replenishments not arriving in time for onward delivery before the big day and people missing out on their preferred choice of gift; particularly challenging when matched with any degree of anticipation or expectation on the part of the intended recipient. So, a word to the wise; make sure you get your order in early on Cyber Monday as it will be fulfilled ahead of those placed late in the day - it could even mean running the gauntlet with the boss over internet usage at work!

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