Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Every Day Is Cyber Monday

By Rick Munarriz - Updated Apr 5, 2017 at 7:06PM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

Don't judge a shopping season by its cover.

Tightfisted shoppers love deals? Tell me something I don't know.

Market watcher comScore released some seemingly encouraging e-tail data yesterday. The company projects that online stores rang up $846 million in sales on Cyber Monday, a 15% improvement over last year.

Cyber Monday has become the dot-com equivalent of Black Friday, as potential buyers return to the Web after the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Since online storefronts know they have a tighter window, given shipping deadlines, putting out choice deals as early as possible is huge.

It's still too early to tell who the winners and losers of Cyber Monday were. Most public companies wait until after the holidays are over to send out their report cards. Bellwether Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) waits a day or two after Christmas before unwrapping its holiday sales metrics to the public. Those that do talk aren't saying much.

IAC's (NASDAQ:IACI) Shoebuy.com issued a press release to point out that 350,000 visitors hit its footwear-selling site. That is a 30% gain over last year, but where's the shopping data? Did the bump in traffic lead to an increase in sales? Shoebuy isn't telling. The release was more of a self-serving piece to point out how it has $3.5 billion in inventory across 700,000 different products.

The comScore projection is a reflection of actual spending, but that also doesn't tell us much. If e-tailers have to resort to steep markdowns and subsidized shipping to win over buyers -- and that is exactly what appears to be happening this turbulent season -- top-line gains may still result in sharp declines on the bottom line.

Unfortunately for retailers, it seems as if discounting is the key to driving traffic, because nearly every merchant is offering up daily deals to keep bargain hunters coming back.

  • High-end jeweler Blue Nile (NASDAQ:NILE) is offering "Daily Gem" markdowns every day between now and Christmas.
  • Clearance specialist Overstock.com (NASDAQ:OSTK) is going with a "12 Days of Christmas" theme to its early December markdowns.
  • Even Drugstore.com (NASDAQ:DSCM) is diving into the viral pool with its "deal of the day" promotion, complete with a countdown clock that ticks away the seconds on a given day's bargains.

In short, every single day is Cyber Monday this month. Investors had better cross their fingers and hope that the price-tag slicing doesn't mean a lump of coal on the bottom line in a few weeks.

Some other shopping tips:

Blue Nile is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers pick. Amazon.com is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendation. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz has been doing most of his holiday shopping online since the 1990s. It's easier to find a parking spot that way. He owns no shares in any of the companies in this story and is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

Amazon.com, Inc. Stock Quote
Amazon.com, Inc.
AMZN
$143.55 (2.07%) $2.91
Overstock.com, Inc. Stock Quote
Overstock.com, Inc.
OSTK
$31.71 (2.13%) $0.66
Match Group, Inc. Stock Quote
Match Group, Inc.
IAC
Blue Nile, Inc. Stock Quote
Blue Nile, Inc.
NILE

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
400%
 
S&P 500 Returns
128%

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 08/13/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.