Cyber Monday is coming, load up the bandwith!

Come November 26th, offices across the US will struggle to get their work done. Why?Because their employees will be shopping online for deals.  If you are an internet retailer then you better have your shopping carts polished and ready to rock. If you are a large e-tailer than you better have enough bandwidth to endure the crush. And if you are a Wii dealer, forget it you’re screwed.

A recent survey revealed that 46 percent of working Americans expect to shop for bargains online the Monday following Thanksgiving, while they are at work. The study, conducted by Decision Analyst ,  stated that although more than 11 percent said they had been caught shopping by their boss while on the job, the survey showed that the temptation to find a great bargain is so strong, they would spend nearly an hour on average shopping online this Monday instead of working coupled with the risk of being caught again.

Cyber Monday was coined to identify the online activity that happens on the Monday immediately following Black Friday, which is traditionally one of the busiest shopping days of the year for “brick and mortar” stores. Cyber Monday is considered the ceremonial kick-off of the holiday online shopping season. Like Black Friday, many e-retailers offer some of the most exceptional deals of the year on Cyber Monday.

Shopping online during the holidays is a trend that has grown beyond a novel thing to do. It is now an accepted and expected form of Christmas Shopping. With that, comes the expectation that all e-tailers deliver on their end of the deal. Online Christmas shopping
allows shoppers to take advantage of  broadband speeds within their offces, veritable privacy, as well as the ability to possibly surf the web for deals for extended periods of time. It also provides a way to save on purchases that would normally cost more in the brick and mortar world as well as a way to avoid crowds, traffic and long lines.

In the words of of Mr. Michael Buffer,”Are you readdddddy to rumble?”

Top Toy and Game searches for Black Friday

Since it’s a short week and we know that this Friday is the “THE” day in regards to whether marketers and retailers have done their jobs properly, we figured the proof would be in the pudding. Or more succinctly, the Lycos 50. So below are the top searches in regards to toys and games for the upcoming yuletide season.

Poker and specific poker-related items like poker chips, poker cards and poker sets top the 2007 list of most-searched toys with web users for the third consecutive year. I beg of you, what does this say of our society? In my wildest dreams I would have never thought that online poker, which is what we are really talking about here, would be so pervasive in our society. But then again, Vegas is just a dusty little cabaret town too…

Online interest in poker generates only three percent more searches than the second most popular toy of 2007, Naruto. Pokemon (#3) makes the Lycos Top Toys list for the second year in a row, while Yu-Gi-Oh continues to drop in search popularity, making its last appearance on the list in 2004.

Harry Potter (#4) makes its fourth consecutive appearance this year, with the most popular Harry Potter-themed searches centering on Harry Potter games, books, DVDs and Harry Potter puppets.  Not really a surprise here given the uber-popularity surrounding the bespectacled one.

Two newcomers enter the Top Toys list of 2007, including Webkinz (#5), doubling in search popularity over the past year, generating 10 times more interest online than Neopets (#9).  Webkinz predominantly are a stop gap or holding tank for children who are poised to move into more interactive toys such as Xbox and Play Station.

Also making her debut on this year’s list is Hannah Montana (#10). If web search activity is any indication, the most popular Hannah Montana-related gifts this holiday season will include Hannah Montana Dolls. Given the incredible demand for tickets to het sold out shows, it’s no surprise that HM Merch is also in equal demand as well.

Barbie (#7)(Yawwwn…) continues her run on the annual Lycos list of Top Toys and Video Games, making the Top 10 for the eighth consecutive year. Interestingly, while search interest in Barbie actually dropped in 2007, she still edged ahead of the Bratz (#8) Dolls, generating nearly twice as much interest online.  This is probablly in large part to Baby Boomers wanting to relive the past through the eyes of their daughters, and thus are snapping up Barbies left and right.

Gaming consoles like Playstation 3, Wii, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Gamecube continue to decrease in search activity for the second straight year, losing more than half of their online search popularity, while the iPod (#6) makes its third consecutive appearance on the Lycos Top Toys list, with the iPod Nano generating the bulk of the search activity. What this tells you is a) the gaming consoles are too damn expensive after all is said and done. b) You can just walk over to your neighbor’s and use theirs and c) music rules.

 So here they are, “The Top 10 Most-Searched Toys this holiday season”:

  1. Poker
  2. Naruto
  3. Pokemon
  4. Harry Potter
  5. Webkinz
  6. iPod
  7. Barbie
  8. Bratz
  9. Neopets
  10. Hannah Montana