On Cyber Monday, nearly all of the Top 100 online retailers are offering a sale, up from 69% of the Top 100 offering a sale on the previous Monday. Merchants offer roughly the same deep discounts week to week.

Top retailers continue to flaunt promotions to entice online shoppers to purchase on Cyber Monday.

Of the Top 100 online retailers in North America, 82% of them offered a sale on Cyber Monday, with 80% of the Top 100 using “Cyber Monday” or other holiday terms in their marketing language, according to a check by Digital Commerce 360 editors.

Of the Top 100, 24% offered a sitewide sale. For merchants that did not offer a sitewide sale, they offered discounts that varied by category. Digital Commerce 360 recorded the deepest discount promoted on the homepage, and the median deepest discount for these 82 retailers promoted on their homepage was 50% off.

More retailers offered a sale and a sitewide sale Cyber Monday compared with just a week before, on Monday, Nov. 22, when only 69 of the Top 100 online retailers offered a promotion on their websites, and 20% offered a sitewide sale.

Interestingly, the deepest percent-off discount for retailers that offered a promotion on their websites Nov. 22 was a median of 50% off, the same as the median discount on Cyber Monday.

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Some Digital Commerce 360 editors noticed that a number of retailers showcased similar banner images and marketing language each week, just replacing the words “Black Friday” with “Cyber Monday.” Kohl’s Corp. is one example of having a similar home page on Wednesday, Nov. 24, and on Cyber Monday.

Kohls.com's homepage on Nov. 24 (The day before Thanksgiving) and on Cyber Monday.

Kohls.com’s homepage on Nov. 24, the day before Thanksgiving (above) and on Cyber Monday (below).

These findings—the large majority of retailers offering a big sale a week before Cyber Monday and at the same discount level—reflects the recent online holiday sales trend of spreading out sales over the holiday season, instead of concentrating purchases over the five-day period of Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday.

“Online sales on big shopping days like Thanksgiving and Black Friday are decreasing for the first time in history, and it is beginning to smooth out the shape of the overall season,” says Taylor Schreiner, director at Adobe Digital Insights.

In fact, 21 of the 28 days from Nov. 1-28 have exceeded $3 billion in online sales, according to Adobe Analytics data. In 2020, only eight days topped $3 billion in online sales by Nov. 28.

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Compared with 2020, when Digital Commerce 360 conducted a similar online test, 88% of Top 50 online retailers offered a promotion on Cyber Monday, slightly higher than 84% of the Top 50 in 2021. Again, the median percent off discount was 50% for the merchants in the Top 50 that offered Cyber Monday promotions in both 2021 and 2020.

Adobe says smaller discounts are expected after 17 months of inflation online, with overall online prices 1.9% higher in October than they were a year ago. Adobe uses the Fisher Price Index to track ecommerce prices, as well as its data based on 1 trillion visits to retail sites and over 100 million SKUs in 18 product categories.

Price is a critical factor to online holiday shoppers, according to a Digital Commerce 360/Bizrate Insights survey of 1,000 online shoppers in September 2021. 60% of consumers said competitive prices was the most important factor when choosing an online retailer for the holidays, the second most popular response behind free shipping, which was cited by 66% of consumers surveyed. Shoppers could pick more than one answer.

Retailers use shipping costs to either entice shoppers (by offering free shipping) or to increase their margins (by not offering free shipping). Only 56% of the Top 100 retailers mentioned “Free shipping” on their homepages on Cyber Monday, up two retailers from the 54% of the Top 100 that mentioned free shipping on the previous Monday, Nov. 22.

For the merchants that offered free shipping, 26.8% of them offered free shipping unconditionally on Cyber Monday, up from 20.4% of them who offered unconditional free shipping on the Monday before. For merchants that offered free shipping with a minimum purchase, the median threshold on both Mondays was $49.

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