Cyber Monday, the year's biggest online shopping day is set to break US sales records. But the days of all-time sales highs on the Monday after Thanksgiving may be on their way out as digital deals become omnipresent.
The final numbers aren't in yet - but the year's biggest online shopping day in the US looks set to break sales records.
Market researchers from the Adobe Digital Index reported sales of over $3 billion (2.83 billion euros) on Cyber Monday, or a 12 percent increase year-on-year.
The complete sales figures are expected on Wednesday. But in the first 10 hours of Cyber Monday alone, around $490 million in purchases were made - or a 14 percent rise from last year. Cyber Monday sales growth far outstripped that of traditional high street shopping on Black Friday, which saw sales fall by more than a billion to $10.4 billion.
Electronics made up the bulk of the Cyber Monday purchases, with Sony's 4k television, Apple iPads, and gaming console PlayStation 4 outpacing competitors in their respective product classes. Star Wars toys, especially fan favorite BB8, also proved very popular ahead of the release of the franchise's newest film.
Cyber Monday may soon just be a regular Monday
Despite the hefty purchase volumes, experts say that the Monday after Thanksgiving - traditionally a fixed day where online retailers offered deep discounts on their wares - may be losing its hold over consumers.
More and more retailers are offering massive markdowns a few days early. Amazon started offering "Lightning Deals" on Saturday and Wal-Mart took all of its Cyber Monday offers online already the night before.
Shoppers have therefore started to learn that waiting until Cyber Monday to fill their online shopping carts may not result in the best deals or even successful purchases. According to Adobe, 13 out of 100 product views showed an out-of-stock message, or more than twice the normal rate.
Frustrated shoppers target Target
Some retailers such as Target found themselves caught off guard. The company announced a 15 percent discount on all of its items online, but was unable to cope with the customer traffic. The hashtag #targetfail made the rounds around frustrated shoppers' social media accounts. Many opted to go Amazon instead.
But as Cyber Monday diminishes in significance in an age of omnipresent digital deals, it's equivalent in China is still going strong. This year's Singles' Day on November 11 saw sales of $14.3 billion - making it the biggest online shopping event in the world.