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An Online Christmas Carol: Part II

Jason Lee Miller
Staff Writer
Published: 2005-11-29

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So after being told of a good way to avoid the traffic-and-tryptophan-induced fisticuffs breaking out at shopping centers everywhere in a way that made perfect sense, you realize you've been hornswaggled. Cyber Monday, like Valentine's Day, is a brand of marketing genius created a week in advance. Welcome to I-Feel-Stupid Tuesday, merry stinkin' Christmas.

Not that any of us that had some doubt about the sudden buzz that made every major news network in the country just in time expressed those doubts before waiting to see what happened---except for this guy, who was willing to throw a little rain on the parade. Everybody else just held their breath.

Doesn't matter now, even after Business Week's day-too-late-and-dollars-too-short exposé of Shop.org's calculated buzz generator.

"Shop.org member Shmuel Gniwisch, chief executive of the online jewelry site Ice.com, recalls getting an e-mail from Shop.org last year, suggesting that online retailers come up with their own marketing hook to match Black Friday," writes Robert D. Hof. A year later, Shop.org releases a press release, giving birth to Cyber Monday.

It doesn't matter because done is done. It's been created, the masses are aware of it, even after being a little disappointed at the lack of blowout specials. The lack of blowout specials is due to online businesses only having a week to prepare for so-called busiest online shopping day of the year. They'll be back in stronger force next year.

Cyber Monday is actually the 12th busiest day. But why split hairs? Amazon.com's stock went up after 1 million items were ordered Monday between 6 AM and 1 PM, an increase of 340,000 items over the same time on Sunday.

Just add that gumdrop to the actual busiest day so far, November 22nd, when revenue spiked 55% to $441 million, according to ComScore.

And let's not forget about Thanksgiving Day itself, when everything's closed. Overall, major online retailers like eBay and Amazon.com saw a greater online push that day than on Black Friday, with Turkey Day driving up traffic 18.8% over last year.

So it was a bunch of hooey. But it's hooey that's going to make online retailers a lot more money.

Merry….um…Merrrrrry, (sigh) Christmas.

Miss An Online Christmas Carol: Part I? Click here.

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About the Author:
Jason L. Miller is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

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