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Cyber Monday Online Shopping Reaches All Time High Increasing 30 Percent over 2011, Reports IBM

Mobile Shopping Rises 70 Percent Over Previous Year

ARMONK, N.Y., Nov. 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Holiday shoppers turned Cyber Monday into the biggest spending day ever with online sales growing 30.3 percent over the same period last year, according to cloud-based analytics findings by IBM (NYSE: IBM).

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With an increase in online sales across multiple channels, the digital consumer took center stage. Retailers, marketing departments and chief marketing officers (CMO) delivered a consistent customer experience across multiple channels from mobile devices, to online and to the show floor leading to the record shopping day.

As part of IBM's Smarter Commerce initiative, the IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark revealed the following trends as of 12:00 am PST:

Cyber Monday 2012 Compared to Cyber Monday 2011:

  • Consumer Spending Increases: Online sales increased 30.3 percent over 2011. 
  • Shopping Peaks at 11:25 am EST: Consumers flocked online, with shopping momentum hitting its highest peak at 11:25 am EST. As in 2011, consumer shopping also maintained strong momentum after commuting hours on both the east and west coast. 
  • Mobile Shopping and Mobile Traffic Increase: On Cyber Monday more than 18 percent of consumers used a mobile device to visit a retailer's site, an increase of more than 70 percent over 2011. Mobile sales reached close to 13 percent, an increase of more than 96 percent over 2011.
  • The iPad Factor: The iPad continued to generate more traffic than any other tablet or smartphone, driving more than 7 percent of online shopping. This was followed by iPhone at 6.9 percent and Android 4.5 percent. The iPad also continued to dominate tablet traffic reaching a holiday high of 90.5 percent. Amazon Kindle leapt into second at 2.6 percent followed by the Samsung Galaxy at 2 percent and the Barnes and Noble Nook at 0.6 percent.
  • Multiscreen Shopping: Consumers shopped in store, online and on mobile devices simultaneously to get the best bargains. Overall 58.1 percent of consumers used smartphones compared to 41.9 percent who used tablets to surf for bargains on Cyber Monday.
  • The Savvy Shopper: While consumers continued to spend more, they once again shopped with greater frequency to take advantage of retailer deals as well as free shipping.This led to a drop in average order value by 6.6 percent to $185.12.  However, the average number of items per order increased 14.1 percent to 8.34 compared to Black Friday. 
  • Social Sales: Shoppers referred from Social Networks such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube generated 0.41 percent of all online sales on Cyber Monday, a decrease of more than 26 percent from 2011.

Cyber Monday 2012 Compared to Black Friday 2012 

  • Consumer Spending Increases: Online sales were up more than 36 percent over Black Friday.
  • Mobile Sales and Traffic: As expected mobile sales decreased as consumers went back to work and conducted more of their shopping from their PC. On Cyber Monday both mobile traffic and sales were down more than 20 percent from Black Friday. 
  • Social Sales: Shoppers referred from Social Networks such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube grew by more than 20 percent over Black Friday to reach .41 percent.
  • Social Media Sentiment Index: Shoppers' positive consumer sentiment on promotions, product availability and convenience all grew over Black Friday. Positive sentiment around retailers themselves also maintained its overall three to one ratio.

"Cyber Monday was not only the pinnacle of the Thanksgiving shopping weekend but when the cash register closed it officially became the biggest online shopping day ever," said Jay Henderson, Strategy Director, IBM Smarter Commerce. "Retailers that adopted a smarter marketing approach to commerce were able to adjust to the shifting shopping habits of their customers, whether in-store, online or via their mobile device of choice, and fully benefit from this day and the entire holiday weekend."

Cyber Monday sales growth was led by several industries which include:

  • Department stores continued to offer compelling deals and promotions that drove sales to grow by 43.1 percent over Cyber Monday 2011.
  • Health and Beauty sales increased 25.1 percent year over year with consumers once again choosing to pamper themselves this holiday.
  • Home goods maintained its momentum this year, reporting a 26.8 percent increase in sales from Cyber Monday 2011.
  • Apparel sales were also strong this holiday with Cyber Monday numbers showing an increase of 25.3 percent over 2011.

Today's news is based on findings from the IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark, the industry's only cloud-based Web analytics platform that tracks more than a million e-commerce transactions a day, analyzing terabytes of raw data from 500 retailers nationwide.

Analysis of public social media content came from the IBM Social Sentiment Index, an advanced analytics and natural language processing tool that analyzes large volumes of social media data to assess public opinions. With this data IBM helps chief marketing officers (CMOs) better understand and respond to the needs of each individual customer, improving sourcing, inventory management, marketing, sales and services programs.

More information on Smarter Commerce can be found at

IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark Video: 

IBM Cyber Monday InfoGraphic:

To join the conversation, follow hashtags #smartershopping, #smartercommerce and #ibmretail on Twitter.


1. Complete IBM 2012 Cyber Monday Benchmark Report (pdf)
2. Press FAQ 

Media Contacts:

Doug Fraim
IBM Media Relations
(617) 501-6376


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