Apple store with mobile shopper outside

Datacember 6: Monday sales are holiday magic

Apple store with mobile shopper outside

Monday appears to be maintaining its magic this holiday season.

Online shoppers have continued to show an outsized interest in buying online on the first day of the work week, a pattern that Datacember first noticed last year.

It’s a pattern that some holiday-shopping-watchers had seen signs of over the past several years. And with made-up shopping holidays, like Cyber Monday, Green Monday and Datacember’s own Monday X, Monday remains a key day for retailers. (Thank God it’s Monday, anyone?)

Last year, Mondays during the holiday season accounted for a significant percentage of conversions over a relevant subset of BloomReach retail customers — especially compared to non-holiday Mondays.

And, in an odd bit of days-of-the-week gymnastics, Monday took on many of the attributes of Sunday during non-holiday periods, a time when Sunday was accounting for just over 20 percent of a week’s conversions, while Mondays accounted for just shy of 15 percent.

The chart below looks at the data from June through October 2015 across a number of sites, compared to the period between Veteran’s Day and Dec. 14, 2015. It looks at the percentage of total conversions that each day of the week contributed to during those periods.

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This year, we looked at conversions on Mondays beginning Nov. 1 through Green Monday. (Yes, there is a Green Monday and it was this week, FYI.) We found that Mondays saw higher than average conversions than the period over all.

Of course, the Monday stat sheet has the advantage of Cyber Monday, which racked up nearly twice as many conversions as the daily average for the entire period. But Mondays’ performance was leavened by the first two Mondays in November, which were well below the average.

More interesting was the Monday momentum we saw later in the month. It started with Monday X, the Monday before Thanksgiving, which had a killer 2015 and a strong 2016.

Conversions on holiday season Mondays

 

While the number of conversions on Monday X this year was just about average for the period, it represented a steep climb — 147 percent — from the previous Monday. It also marked the point at which holiday season Mondays began performing well above the daily average in terms of conversions.

Monday has also outperformed Sunday as a conversion engine this holiday season. While Monday conversions are beating the period average, Sundays are well below it.

The Monday metamorphosis is even clearer when you look at a month of Mondays leading up to the holiday period. While both Sundays and Mondays in October were strong performers, relative to the month’s average conversions, Mondays averaged 4.8 percent more conversions than Sundays.

October Conversions chart

These monster Mondays and the annual Sunday-Monday flip are in part a reflection of the day-to-day volatility of online shopping. But the Monday bump during the holiday season certainly looks like a thing, as Mike Baumgarten of Custora told Datacember when we first asked last year.

“It’s almost like a (rising) curve over the past couple of years for Monday,” he said last year. “Then it will go down a bit for the weekend and peak back up again for Monday.”

His working theory? When people are out and about and relaxing on the weekend, they’re more likely to be browsing on mobile phones. And though consumer habits are changing, many still probably find it easier to actually buy on their laptops.

So they wait until Monday when things literally settle down.

We’ll add our closely related speculation: During the holiday season, consumers spend the weekend out shopping and researching online. By Monday, they believe they’ve done their due diligence and it’s time to close the deal.

Oh, and one more thing: It could be that shoppers add items do their carts when they have time to shop on Saturday and Sunday and then give it until Monday to see whether the killer holiday deal they found gets even better.

Besides, the clock always ticks louder on Monday.

Whatever the reason, it’s a trend that retailers ought to keep an eye on. Those looking for a competitive advantage might want to scour their own data to see if in the holiday season, they should be gearing up for customers who are ready to buy on Mondays.

Mike Cassidy is BloomReach’s storyteller. Contact him at mike.cassidy@bloomreach.com; follow him on Twitter at @mikecassidy.