The “real” Cyber Monday…was December 10th.

According to the Atlas Institute, which has analyzed online transaction data over the past 7 years, the “real” cyber Monday , or busiest online shopping day of the year would have been December 10th. For the past 7 years the Atlas Institute has observed a number of online shopping patterns with the most obvious being that online shopping peaks in the weeks leading up to Christmas, there is a period of depressed sales immediately before Christmas, and most online shopping occurs on Mondays and Tuesdays during business hours.

For instance in 2006, the busiest online shopping day was Monday December 11th, which recorded activity 89% above average. The following Monday, December 18th, recorded the second highest online shopping volume during the season; and the last Monday before Christmas, with adequate shipping time, had also established itself as a strong day for online sales. This would make sense, as this is the last day that online shoppers feel they can order and expect their purchases to arrive on time.

Interestingly enough, after the second monday in December, online shopping starts to dramatically decline until Christmas day. Which begs the question, the Atlas Institute says; What are online marketers doing after this date? and what should they be doing differently to counteract this?

The bottom line is that retailers, advertisers and online marketers need to essentially gear the months of November and December towards Christmas. They need to concentrate their efforts on Mondays and Tuesdays and from the hours of 8am to 4pm. And They also need to make sure that their sites, are intuitive, easy to understand, easy to shop, easy to checkout and they damn well better deliver those packages before December 25th!

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